Cape Cod Young Professionals Host Annual Community Breakfast Event

HARWICH – Cape Cod Young Professionals [CCYP], a nonprofit that works to connect, engage, and advance Cape Cod’s young workforce and future leaders, hosted a sold out crowd at the organization’s Annual Community Breakfast event last week.

The crowd of more than 175 attendees featured representatives from the Cape’s business and nonprofit communities, students and faculty from Monomoy and Barnstable High Schools, and dignitaries and elected officials from Cape Cod and the state.

At this year’s event, CCYP welcomed Massachusetts’ State Secretary of Labor and Workforce Development, Rosalin Acosta, as Keynote Speaker.

In her speech, “Building a Strong Workforce for Cape Cod and the Commonwealth,” Secretary Acosta provided information on the job market and economy, both regionally and statewide, and highlighted her office’s recent priorities in the areas of workforce and job skills development.

Secretary Acosta shared that Massachusetts is experiencing historically low unemployment rates, at 2.9 percent.

Unemployment on Cape Cod is lower than the state unemployment rate, at 2.7 percent, however, this number rises in the non-summer months to as much as 4 to 6 percent in some parts of the Cape, underscoring the region’s highly seasonal workforce.

Acosta discussed the need to revisit minimum education requirements for jobs to ensure that qualified candidates are not excluded at a time when employers have so many vacancies to fill.

She also emphasized the importance of increased access to post-secondary education and on-the-job mentoring to retain quality employees and meet the demand for workers, which is certain to grow as more retirees leave the workforce.

Secretary Acosta lauded Cape Cod and CCYP for the regional engagement they have been able to achieve around the retention of young workers, saying that she wished she could replicate CCYP across the state.

Massachusetts State Senator Julian Cyr closed out the event with his speech, “Meeting the Needs of our Local Workforce.”

Cyr discussed the most critical needs of young working age adults on Cape Cod, such as diverse housing options, affordable childcare, and high paying job opportunities, and highlighted how the Cape’s legislative delegation is actively working to address these needs through pending legislation and ongoing initiatives.     

Cyr reinforced the value of local civic engagement to hold decision makers accountable and encouraged young people to take their seat at the table through appointed board and committee roles to ensure their priorities and perspectives are considered.

During the event, CCYP highlighted the organization’s accomplishments over the previous year, which included the launch of a new workforce recruitment and retention campaign called “My Cape Cod Story,” increased civic education through a mock town meeting program and election voter guide, and support for those looking to start or grow a business through the new CCYP-EforAll Partnership.

Leadership from the CCYP Board of Directors presented annual volunteer awards, including the organization’s 2019 Outstanding Committee Chair to Craig Orsi of Orsi & Company, and 2019 Volunteer of the Year to Jana Gailiunas of RentSons.

Awardees were recognized or their willingness to go above and beyond in their volunteer roles throughout the year, and for their dedication to CCYP, its programs, and events.

The breakfast also featured recognition of CCYP’s 2019 Career Connect Scholarship recipients, Jacquelyn Shea of Dennis and Courtney Butler of Wellfleet.

Bot awardees work in the local government sector and seek to further their careers on Cape Cod by pursuing advanced education opportunities.

CCYP’s “Giving Circle Grant” recipients were also announced during the event.

Since “Giving Circle’s” inception in 2015, $43,000 in funding has been distributed to local nonprofits working to improve the lives of young working-age adults on Cape Cod.

This year, in partnership with the Cape Cod Foundation, CCYP awarded funding to the WE CAN, Pleasant Bay Community Boating, and Cape Cod Children’s Place.

The event was presented with generous support from the Cooperative Bank of Cape Cod.

To learn more about CCYP, the organization’s civic work, or the Annual Community Breakfast, visit www.capecodyoungprofessionals.org.

About Luke Leitner

Luke Leitner grew up in Watertown Massachusetts and now lives in West Yarmouth on the Cape. He has been a part of the news team in the CapeCod.com News Center since the spring of 2019. He studied business communications at Western New England University.



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