What we do:

CenterState CEO’s Work Train initiative centers on:

  • helping workers access career opportunities and build wealth through family sustaining employment; and
  • helping employers succeed by connecting them to talent and supporting their talent development and retention strategies.

Work Train is dedicated to addressing the challenge of un-and-underemployment in Central New York by creating solutions that benefit both businesses and job seekers alike.

How we do it:

Through collaborative partnerships, Work Train establishes best practices and builds capacity within workforce-related systems to drive long term change.

Housed within CenterState CEO, the initiative is driven by a collaborative of funders and community partners that represent: business, economic development, philanthropy, workforce development, local government, training and education, and grassroots organizations. Through industry partnerships, Work Train understands employer needs and leverages existing resources from partners to develop training and workforce strategies that meet industry demand.

Through a "dual client” model, Work Train assists businesses in recruiting, training and retaining skilled employees by listening to their needs and working together to develop innovative solutions. Work Train also works with community partners to assist residents to access training and obtain careers that pay family-sustaining wages and opportunities for career advancement.

Work Train is a proud partner site within the National Fund for Workforce Solutions, a national network of “best practice” regional workforce collaboratives.

What is Work Train?

Learn more about how CenterState CEO's Work Train initiative engages community partners, employers and educators to help build a strong, diverse workforce for Central New York.

National Fund for Workforce Solutions

Take a closer look at our collaboration with the National Fund for Workforce Solutions (NHWS). Syracuse is a partner city working with the NFWS to address systems change in our community. In this video, CenterState CEO SVP of Inclusive Growth Dominic Robinson talks about Syracuse Build and Syracuse Surge - two large multi-sector initiatives aimed at creating workforce development solutions that lead to greater economic opportunity for job seekers and solutions for employers that help our community as a whole to thrive.


Partnerships Driving Systems Change

Some of Work Train’s major projects and partnerships include:

  • Syracuse Build, a mayoral initiative that connects job seekers from Syracuse’s historically marginalized communities with career pathways in construction fields. CenterState CEO worked closely with the Syracuse Build team on the development of training programs, and raised additional funding to sustain the initiative and deepen its impact. Syracuse Build is now administered by CNY Works, with a goal to align local government, anchor institutions, construction firms and unions in a network of community, training and workforce partners.
  • Syracuse Surge, a mayoral initiative which, in collaboration with Onondaga County and leading local institutions, is working to ensure inclusive growth in the New Economy through talent and workforce development, minority, women, veteran and disabled owned (XBE) business development and community engagement. CenterState CEO partners on several Syracuse Surge-led workforce training and advancement programs focused on creating pathways to in-demand, local careers in high-tech manufacturing.
  • ERIE 21 at Le Moyne College, which works to elevates the community by facilitating tech-centered pathways that equip students with the skills and confidence to thrive in an ever-changing workforce. As part of the initiative, CenterState CEO worked with Le Moyne College and partners to help launch tech training programs, including year long certificates in coding, cybersecurity and a Surge Coding Apprenticeship.
  • Tech & Culture

Pictured: The Surge Advanced Manufacturing training program offers hands-on preparation for careers in clean high-tech advanced manufacturing.

For more information contact:


Aimee Durfee

Vice President of Workforce Innovation

Email me

Cainaan S. Webb

Syracuse Surge Career Navigator

Email me

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