Kendall Workforce Development
In late November 2018, the CRA released a Request for Interest (RFI) for the Opportunity Space at 255 Main Street in Kendall Square. Responses will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis.
The CRA is reigniting its involvement in workforce development issues in Cambridge. Historically, the CRA operated various workforce initiatives including the youth training program in Wellington-Harrington that evolved into Just-A-Start. Today the CRA is undertaking projects to strengthen connections between the vibrant technology / biotechnology industries in Kendall and the neighborhoods of Cambridge immediately around Kendall Square.
This new workforce development focus began with the planning for the Foundry building, and now includes the 255 Main Opportunity Space described below. Additionally, the CRA and the City have begun a collaborative research project to take a deeper dive into the workforce development needs of Cambridge. The CRA also maintains an active partnership with the Kendall Square Association to connect with and help expand the diversity and inclusion initiatives underway at our local innovation companies.
255 Main Opportunity Space
The CRA is creating a workforce development Opportunity Space, as a component of the KSURP, to strengthen the connections between job seekers in Cambridge, Boston-area residents and the innovation economy of Kendall Square. The CRA and BXP are partnering with the NonProfit Center (NPC) to create the Opportunity Space in existing commercial space within the 255 Main Street building. The Opportunity Space will open early in 2019.
The Opportunity Space will serve as a workforce ‘campus’ cluster of classrooms, small offices, gathering space, and co-working space within the broader Innovation Space of 255 Main Street. Programs in the Opportunity Space will provide a range of targeted technical education and career development opportunities. The CRA envisions that 255 Main Street should become a central node for technology focused workforce development activity and employer recruitment in Cambridge. As Kendall Square is home to a wide range of local start-ups and large-scale international companies that are collectively leaders in the innovation economy, this Opportunity Space will be pivotal in meeting the economic opportunity objectives of the KSURP, helping Kendall Square and other local businesses secure talent, and helping residents meet their career development goals.
Opportunity Space Objectives:
Create a center with multiple layers of career assistance services, such as assessment, education, counseling, and mentorship resources, to individuals seeking to enter the innovation economy.
Deliver a high impact set of training programs targeting a range of skill levels matched to the needs of Kendall Square employers.
Develop an approachable, professional space for job seekers in the community and an accessible, useful resource for employers building their workforce.
The Opportunity Space will be considered successful if it becomes an essential location in the workforce development landscape of the region, and functions as a critical resource for employers seeking to fill their talent pipeline. Organizations wishing to locate technology focused workforce development programs in the Opportunity Space should respond to the Opportunity Space Rolling RFI.