Digital Works training center opens in Highland County

By Carleta Weyrich

December 2, 2013

A Digital Works training center has opened in neighboring Highland County. Digital Works is a sustainable job creation platform connecting 21st century workforce opportunities to people seeking employment. Using the digital learning model established by Connected Nation, the program trains, places, and mentors candidates for fast paced, high paying technology sector jobs.

“Digital Works strives to train employment seekers to be the best Customer Service Representatives that they can be,” said Joel Pierre, one of several residents of Lynchburg involved in bringing the center to the village. “The Digital Works program starts with a skills intake and assessment and goes on to provide nationally accredited job readiness certification and background screenings to successfully place professional level candidates in Customer Service Representatives positions in as little as six weeks, working for national corporate partners.”

A group called Appalachian Gateway Development was created to ensure that the Digital Works training center would open in Lynchburg. The board of the organization consists of Pierre, Jeremy Shaffer, Carolyn Hastings, Sharon Bedard and Dave Jordan. Appalachian Gateway Development’s focus will be on economic development, community development, and personal development.

The first piece to this puzzle is the Digital Works training facility providing training and jobs to local people which is expected to bring economic impact and revitalization to the area. As the host for Digital Works, Appalachian Gateway Development secured a building and provide utilities for the training center. Southern Hills Community Bank has donated a building next to its Lynchburg location, the Village of Lynchburg gave a variance for water and sewer, and Appalachian Gateway Development will provide utilities.

Funding for the training is being supplied by the Clinton and Highland counties Employment and Training Centers through the Workforce Investment Act(WIA). Appalachian Gateway Development is also raising funds for scholarships to ensure as many people as possible can go through the Digital Works training program.

For a video explaining the program, visit

For more information about the program go to

Enrollment is available online at