High Priority Occupations

High Priority Occupations (HPOs) are one component of Pennsylvania's industry-driven approach to workforce development. The purpose of the HPO lists is to align workforce training and education investments with occupations that are in demand by employers, have higher skill needs and are most likely to provide family sustaining wages. Combining statistical data with regional expert input allow for a complete picture of the actual workforce needs of the commonwealth. HPOs are job categories that are in demand by employers, have evolving skill needs, and are likely to provide family-sustaining wages. They are occupations that generally require some amount of training but no more than a four-year college degree.


THE HIGH PRIORITY OCCUPATIONS PETITION PERIOD IS OPEN. Petitions are due to NWPA Job Connect Board Staff by COB Wednesday, May 23, 2018. This will allow ample review time prior to the state's deadline. Please refer to the HPO Methodology posted below for petition requirements. A few other items to notes:

  • The DRAFT HPO List for next year has been posted below. It is this year's list.
  • Northwest petitions need to account for seven openings in the occupation for EACH of the next three years. This must be noted in the employer letters.
  • Each of the openings must provide an annual wage of at least $33,790 and be noted in the employer letters.
  • Employers letters MUST be signed
  • Next year's HPO List will be in effect August 1, 2018 through July 31, 2019 to be more in alignment with the timeline for education and training program approvals.
  • CWIA will release the final 2018 HPO lists by August 1, 2018
  • Petitions received after the May 23 deadline may be considered for inclusion after August 1, 2018
  • Submit complete petitions to participate@nwpajobconnect.org by COB May 23, 2018


High Priority Occupations Information

CURRENT Northwest High Priority Occupations List
This list is valid from September 1, 2017, through August 1, 2018.
Information on How to Submit HPO Petitions
This is the state's webpage dedicated to HPO Lists and Petitions. Please review this information carefully while preparing your petition.
NEW HPO Methodology
April 2018. (Sample documentation included)
In-Demand Occupations List 09/01/17

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