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Foundations Essential to College Workforce Programs

  • Publication: 
    Community College Daily
    Date: 
    February 5, 2018

    NEW ORLEANS — Foundations are playing more of a key role in community college workforce programs than ever

    “There has been a sea change in community college involvement with foundations,” said Sandra Kurtinis, president of the Community College of Baltimore County (Maryland) and chair-elect of the American Association of Community Colleges’ board of directors, at a plenary session she moderated at AACC’s Workforce Development Institute (WDI).

    Skillful, an initiative of the Markle Foundation, leverages technology to connect workers to good-paying middle-skill jobs. The focus is on skills, rather than degrees, said Senior Manager Drew Petty.

    Skillful began this effort by convening thought leaders to discuss “how to change the entire labor system” and how to develop a model that can be shared, Petty said.

    “There’s a lack of clarity,” he said. People entering the job market don’t know what to expect. Skillful and its partners are working on aggregating graduation and wage data from the federal government and sharing the results with colleges so people can have a better idea of what employers want, what skills they should have, and what kinds of opportunities are available.

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