Tag Archives: Fairfax County Department of Family Services

Career Pathways Initiative awards 8 certificates to August 2015 program graduates

In August 2015, NOVA, in partnership with the Fairfax County Department of Family Services (DFS) Employment & Training Program Career Pathways Initiative, awarded 8 certificates for Career Pathways’ Administrative Professional and Medical Administrative Professional Training Certification programs.

This graduation ceremony marks the 5th time that NOVA has provided this targeted training for DFS clients in a group setting at a DFS office site. To highlight the program’s success, Job Developer Warren Smith read an email from a program graduate who is now employed by Fairfax County.

Career Pathways Initiative

Fairfax County DFS:
a history of helping careers

The Virginia’s Initiative for Employment, not Welfare (VIEW) Program is one of several employment programs operated by Fairfax County DFS. In October 2013, VIEW partnered with NOVA to run the inaugural Administrative Assistant Training Certification Program at the VIEW Job Center, located in the Pennino Building in Fairfax. The class was filled to capacity, and all 10 students graduated.

Due to the success of the first cohort, a second class began the next month, in November 2013. This time 8 students received certificates. The third cohort, held in February 2014, issued 7 new certificates.

The fourth cohort was held in February 2015. This was the first offering of the Administrative Professional and Medical Administrative Professional Training Certification. 12 students participated and graduated.

DFS Career Pathways

During the latter part of 2014, DFS Employment and Training staff researched in-demand occupations in the Northern Virginia area with the goal of establishing targeted certification training to assist our job-seeking participants.  The VIEW Program had partnered with NOVA in the past, but offerings were limited to VIEW program participants only.

We wanted to make sure opportunities were available to all program participants, so representatives from the following organizations gathered to discuss how to make this happen:

  • VIEW
  • Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) Adult
  • WIOA Youth
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Employment and Training (SNAPET)

We worked out the details and determined which occupations we wanted to target, and decided to add a medical administrative professional component to the training. By adding the medical administrative piece, students would be able to sit for an exam that would award them an industry-recognized credential.

DFS once again reached out to NOVA to develop a curriculum, which was taught in February 2015. This class had participants from several of our employment programs, not just the VIEW Program.


Rick Garrett is Manager for the Fairfax County Department of Family Services Employment and Training. Amy Miller is a WIOA Supervisor for Employment & Training. Read more about Employment and Training services at fairfaxcounty.gov/dfs/ss/employtraining.htm.

Ilene Danforth (idanforth@nvcc.edu) is a Business Program Developer for NOVA’s Workforce Development Division. She develops customized training programs for NOVA’s corporate training clients and community partners. 

Educating Youth Through Employment

NOVA’s Workforce Development Division attended the recent EYE (Educating Youth through Employment) Appreciation and Awards Ceremony earlier this month. Held by The SkillSource Group, the event celebrated the youth and the employers who participated in the EYE program – a summer initiative that recruits, screens and matches youth ages 18-21 with professional opportunities in the private and public sector, and with other local businesses. SkillSource, in coordination with Fairfax County’s Department of Family Services, has successfully implemented this employer-driven summer employment initiative since 2006.

These young adults are required to attend intensive training workshops before and during their work experiences. The EYE program offers local youth more than just a summer job, but rather an exciting, professional opportunity with training that will allow them to explore a career path that matches their interest. (SkillSource Group)

It was pleasing to see the number of employers who chose to give back to the community by hiring youth this summer. A considerable number of the EYE program participants will be attending Northern Virginia Community College. NOVA Workforce Development representatives met with the students and provided insight into courses and programs available to help the students meet their future goals.

Congratulations to SkillSource, the EYE Program employers, and all the community partners, but most importantly congrats to this year’s EYE Program participants.


SkillSource Group EYE program | Educating Youth through Employment

Joe Matope is a Business Development Manager with NOVA Workforce Development Division, and works with employers to develop and deliver customized training solutions for their staff. For more information about NOVA Workforce Development Division’s collaboration with SkillSource Group, contact Joe at jmatope@nvcc.edu.

New Training Collaboration Leads to First Graduation

NOVA Staff, Wendy Tetteh, Job Center Coordinator and Students.
NOVA Staff, Wendy Tetteh, Job Center Coordinator and Students.


NOVA’s Workforce Development Division is pleased to announce a training collaboration with the Fairfax County Department of Family Services *(VIEW program).  This collaboration has given us the opportunity to offer an Administrative Assistant Training Program at their new Fairfax Job Center in the Fairfax County Department of Family Services.  The new Fairfax Job Center opened its doors during the first week of September, and we are honored to support their initiatives and look forward to serving the needs of their clients through ongoing customized training.

The first training class was presented Certificates of Completion by their instructor, Yvonne Morton, Adjunct Professor at Northern Virginia Community College on Friday, October 11.  Ms. Morton opened her comments to the ten students with the following group rally: “IT ONLY GETS…(cheered in sync) BETTER!” This group rally is indicative of the collaboration that was established between NOVA and the VIEW program.  We look forward to a long-term contract training collaboration with this vital community program.


* The Virginia Initiative for Employment not Welfare (VIEW) supports the efforts of families receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) to achieve independence through employment. VIEW focuses on the participants’ strengths and provides services to help them overcome job-related challenges, as well as personal, medical and family challenges that affect employment.