WASHINGTON, D.C. — A new report from the National Immigration Forum underscores the multifaceted benefits of providing English language training to employees, and identifies opportunities for businesses to further develop their workforce.
“Upskilling New Americans: Innovative English Training for Career Advancement” analyzes the Forum’s Skills and Opportunity for the New American Workforce (SONAW) program, an industry-contextualized English language training program for workers with limited English proficiency.
The report emphasizes the program’s benefits to immigrant workers looking for career advancement opportunities, as well as employers seeking to retain and promote a diverse workforce. The results “prove that increased English language skills have a lasting and multiplying impact on career mobility, helping workers improve their livelihoods, while boosting local and national economies,” the report reads.
The report is being released in partnership with RTI International, the Community College Consortium for Immigrant Education, World Education, and the Walmart Foundation.
“SONAW has enabled businesses to develop and retain talent while empowering their workforce,” said Jennie Murray, Director of Integration Programs at the National Immigration Forum. “We’re excited to share the lessons and results of this one-of-a-kind program to further engage businesses and educators on innovative workforce development strategies.”
“English language skills are critical to immigrants’ ability to thrive and contribute, and SONAW is implementing groundbreaking strategies to make these skills more accessible,” said Ali Noorani, Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum. “By equipping workers with the tools needed to advance their career and fill the nation’s middle-skills gap, SONAW is advancing solutions for all Americans.”