In today’s economy, making sure that the skills of the available workforce meet the needs of local industry is crucial. By developing career pathways for workers that are aligned with the needs of industry, people can become and remain employed, industry grows, and the overall regional and national economies benefit.
That’s where Sector Planning comes in, and it all starts with focused, active partnerships between businesses and those engaged in workforce development. These “Sector Partnerships” are defined as:
“Focused, active partnerships among businesses in a target industry sector and workforce development organizations, educators, training providers, labor unions, community organizations, and other key stakeholders”
Working together, these collaborations identify industry needs for workers with specific skills, education, and credentials, and then make sure that educational and training opportunities are available to help people… Read more →
We recently completed another strategic planning engagement for a college in Illinois, and I was moved by the engagement, interest and passion this group brought to the task of finding a better future for their institution and the community it serves.
South Suburban Community College brought about 100 leaders together from this region just south of Chicago for an intensive, 2-day event designed to drive innovation and planning to guide the institution’s next five years. Using our Community-Centered Strategic Planning Process, stakeholders from the community representing K-12, the university system, economic and workforce development and employers joined those internal to the college (including students) in the effort.
This process is intense, it is time-consuming and it isn’t for everybody. It just works.
We use the essence of the “Re-Claiming the American Dream” report from the American Association of… Read more →
Recently I had the privilege of working with a group of leaders from Kankakee Community College (KCC) and the surrounding region, in a planning retreat designed to drive the College’s next four-year strategic plan. It was rewarding to see a group so engaged and focused – so aligned on the need to make an impact – not just for students, but also for the regional economy.
Kankakee is about an hour southwest of Chicago. In the next few years, the community is projected to see a significant shift in the region’s demographics that has major implications for the education and workforce systems. Further complicating matters, the community has also witnessed the decline of its historical manufacturing industry – leading to high unemployment (third highest rate in Illinois) and a workforce with low post-secondary attainment rates. Kankakee's place in a new,… Read more →