Bridges Out of Poverty Summit

rows of pins with the silhouette of a person inside.

Are you aware that over one-third of households in WI struggle to afford basic necessities?*

Moraine Park Technical College is excited to host national speakers, Terie Dreussi-Smith and Ruth Weirich, from aha! Process, Inc., to help bridge the gap and provide a better understanding of poverty in our communities and workplaces to assist with retention, productivity, and engagement in entry-level workers. This two-day summit will be held on March 12 and 13 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The event will consist of a Bridges out of Poverty and Workplace Stability workshop to learn how to achieve workplace stability for entry-level employee retention and performance. These sessions will help us recognize the signs of poverty and the range of factors that create instability for our employees, and see how instability, employee performance, and profitability are related.

Employers have come to understand diversity in terms of age, race, and gender – now they need to understand it in terms of socioeconomic class. The income and resource gap is a growing divide in workplace culture, causing missed opportunities from miscommunications to separations, as well as lost productivity, promotion, and profit.
“Viewing a diverse workforce through the lens of economic class allows a company to create more stability for team members and for the business, which results in higher retention, higher productivity, more engagement, and increased profits.” – Ruth K. Weirich, Workplace Stability, p. 129

Did you also know that 27% of households in the MPTC district fall below the ALICE level? ALICE stands for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed; it’s a way for defining men and women who work hard, earn above the federal poverty level, but still not enough to afford a basic household budget.*

With that being said, are you aware of the hidden rules, culture, and range of factors that contribute to the instabilities in poverty? Workplace instability issues have an impact on employee retention and performance across all industries. We are hoping these sessions will raise awareness and give you the tools to provide open lines of communication with your employees, ultimately creating higher employee retention.

Bridges out of Poverty will use the lens of economic class to provide concrete tools and strategies for a community to alleviate poverty.  The Bridges out of Poverty and Workplace Stability sessions will provide tools and strategies for you to:

  • Recognize the signs of poverty
  • Understand the culture of poverty
  • Recognize the range of factors that create instability for employees
  • See how instability, employee performance and profitability are related

Event details:
March 12 & 13, 2019
8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Thelma Sadoff Center for the Arts
Fond du Lac, WI

For more information or to register for this event, visit . 


Written by Samantha Story