Wisconsin Economic Development Academy Update: Kathy Heady, Academy Manger

WEDA Academy Manager Kathy Heady

With the New Year right around the corner, we’re very pleased to let you know the WEDA Academy is developing a comprehensive set of affordable, quality educational programs for 2020.

An exciting highlight of the new schedule is a series of four programs on workforce housing. Wisconsin’s workforce housing shortage is affecting communities and employers across the state, making it more difficult to attract or retain workers and impacting the economic competitiveness of communities, regions and businesses. Click here to register. 

Programs in this series will provide participants with an understanding of the causes and impacts of the shortage, initiatives for addressing the shortage, best practices in workforce housing development and resources and tools to use in your community. Registration is now open on the WEDA website and you are encouraged to sign up for the entire series.

Please find an overview of the series below:

  • Workforce Housing: Framing the Issues and Opportunities. This free webinar, scheduled for December 12, will provide a clear understanding of the issues surrounding the Wisconsin workforce housing shortage and information on opportunities for reform, including legislative initiatives.
  • Financing Workforce Housing: Exploring Program Options and Models. This in-person workshop be held at the Madison Club on February 5, prior to the Governor’s Conference on Economic Development. The course will explore financing structures of successful workforce housing projects through a case study approach.
  • Spurring Single Family Residential Investment, Tools for Your Market. This webinar, which will take place on April 28, will explore options for spurring new single-family housing development and home ownership and will also feature information on resources for the rehabilitation of existing homes.
  • Workforce Housing: Identifying Local Needs, Municipal Tools and Zoning Practices. This workshop will be held in June in Appleton. The workshop will cover topics including examining local housing needs and gaps, best practices in permitting and the development approval process. It will also touch on innovations in zoning practices and municipal tools to encourage the development of workforce housing.

The 2020 calendar also includes 3 programs on Workforce Development.  The first program, a webinar, is planned for July and will focus on community strategies.

The second course, which will be hosted by the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) Workforce Development Strategies, will be held in Wisconsin on August 6-7.  This elective course meets the professional development requirements for the Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) exam.  CEcDs can also earn recertification credits. 

The third program, Dealing with Barriers to Employment: Sustainable Best Practices, will be held on September 30 prior to the Fall Conference.

Two additional webinars will be held in 2020, one on fiscal and economic impact tools and one on the fundamentals of business retention.  I hope that you can join us for one or more of these exciting programs.  As a reminder, be sure to look for approved credits/points for continuing education/recertification on the course registration page. 

Please reach out to me at kheady@weda.org if you have any questions, have program ideas or are interested in serving as an instructor.