In March 2021, the US economy added 916,000 jobs but only 7,000 went to workers with high school diplomas but no college degree. Alelo’s technology has the potential to change that, rapidly building new skills that lead to higher-paying jobs with upward career potential.
On May 10th Alelo launched its technology-driven reskilling course to a pilot group of unemployed and underemployed individuals without a college degree in Hampton Roads, Virginia. The trainees will reskill over eight weeks for a job as a Community Health Worker (CHW) by role-playing online with AI-driven avatars.
“Role-playing with avatars in realistic settings allows candidates to apply real-world skills without leaving a desk. When encountering real-world scenarios, trainees are confident and adept,” says Alelo CEO, Dr. W. Lewis Johnson. “The artificial intelligence adapts role-playing simulations to each trainee, concentrating on only areas of need. Role-playing combined with personalized learning is how we cut training that traditionally takes over a year to just eight weeks,” adds Johnson.
CHWs work in the community to promote public health and help patients gain access to healthcare and social services. They played critical roles in every phase of the COVID-19 pandemic and will continue to play important roles in promoting vaccinations, helping patients with chronic care needs, and responding to new outbreaks of infectious disease. They are important members of healthcare and public health teams. CHWs often go on to pursue a variety of careers in healthcare and public health.
In partnership with the Hampton Roads Workforce Council, Alelo will offer the eight-week CHW course every Monday to small cohorts of up to thirty eligible Hampton Roads candidates at no cost. The first cohort completes training on July 2nd, at which time the Workforce Council and Alelo will arrange interviews with local healthcare employers.
One candidate from the first cohort explains, “I decided to sign up because I am trying to transition from a career in the shipyard to one in healthcare. I have already successfully passed my PCA classes and feel this class would help broaden my opportunities in the healthcare field. I’m hopeful that entering the healthcare field with more than a PCA certificate will also help me to enter the field with a more rewarding salary that will allow me to continue to support my children without pulling us down further into poverty.”
Initial funding for the training and placement came from the XPRIZE Rapid Reskilling competition sponsored by New Profit, which paired Alelo and the Workforce Council. Alelo is looking for partners to expand the training to other high-needs cities. Once Alelo training receives state certification additional candidates will be trained using Federal workforce innovation funds.
The product will also be customized and sold to healthcare providers looking to upskill or improve patient communication skills in existing employees.