Workforce development center opening in downtown Portsmouth
Open house on Friday afternoon
Portsmouth Economic Development is opening a brick-and-mortar resource Friday, aiming to create a public and accessible hub for skills training, career fairs, job applications and Internet access.
The 2,000-square-foot office space, called [email protected] Center, is located in a suite at its downtown headquarters, 200 High St.
The idea has been brewing since the fall 2019, said Jessica Bedenbaugh, marketing and communications manager for Portsmouth Economic Development. Virtual programming started in January.
“It’s all well and good to bring jobs to the city,” Bedenbaugh said, “but we have to make sure that our citizens are ready for them.”
Portsmouth Economic Development hired Pamela Croom in October to help launch and run the hub. Croom, who worked for the city of Hampton for 19 years, also serves as president of the Virginia PTA.
The center will hold an open house Friday from noon-2 p.m. The center will be available to residents from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
It consists of a small computer center and a testing area for processing job applications and taking online tests and certifications, Bedenbaugh said. There are some smaller private offices, and employers can reserve a room for small meetings or job fairs for 20 to 30 people. The [email protected] team can be reached at [email protected].