November 13, 2009 – Today more than ever, community colleges are a key part of America's strategy to develop a globally competitive and flexible workforce. The Obama Administration, recognizing this need, is aggressively directing resources to expand capacity and advance innovation in service delivery.
In response, Maher & Maher convened a National Thought Leaders group in a freewheeling, open source dialogue to envision a 21st century community college response to workforce issues. Convened virtually in sessions during September of this year, the group responded with calls for increased use of alternative delivery methods, shorter curriculum better aligned with employer needs, increased accountability to community health, and more.
"I was stunned with the energy of this group. They dove right in and they were not shy about calling for significant reform. From a newly aligned K-20 system, to renewed commitment to break down slow and stodgy silos, this group has a vision we can all benefit from," according to Rick Maher, President & CEO of Maher & Maher. Working together we developed a "FutureVision" for the next generation of community colleges, and began to conceptualize a series of "world-class practices" for community colleges' workforce development function to move forward-thinking institutions toward that vision.
The group's work is open source and all participants are free to use the work products in any ways that might benefit them. Maher & Maher will field test the groups' conclusions in several upcoming projects in area colleges, and expects to continue to expand the list of "world-class practices" designed to help the nation's community college system better serve America's workforce.
For more information about Maher & Maher's services to community colleges, contact us at 888-90MAHER, or click here to download a copy of a brief report summarizing the work of the National Thought Leaders' focus group.
Maher & Maher is a New Jersey-based change management and training consulting firm providing program/project integration and management, facilitation, and technical assistance, including development of specialized training and e-learning solutions for the communications and government services sectors. (www.mahernet.com)