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economic development

To highlight the growing importance of business engagement in education, the National Career Pathways Network (NCPN) and the Institute for a Competitive Workforce (ICW), an affiliate of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, have released a joint publication titled Thriving in Challenging Times: Connecting Education to Economic Development Through Career Pathways.

The publication’s title reflects an increasing awareness among American employers and business leaders of the critical role they must play in supporting successful education models in their local communities, particularly in challenging economic times.

Thriving in Challenging Times profiles 17 local and two statewide career pathways programs from across the U.S. by documenting the challenges, strategies, results, and business engagement each partnership has experienced.  Featured industry sectors range from aerospace to healthcare to nuclear energy with business involvement ranging from small businesses to multinational corporations.  Each program includes three essential elements for ensuring students are prepared for college and careers –secondary, postsecondary, and business/industry engagement components.

2009
Institute for a Competitive Workforce and National Career Pathways Network

The U.S. economy will emerge from the Great Recession radically transformed from what it was a generation ago. Changes are afoot affecting which occupations and industry sectors will produce employment growth, as well as what education credentials, competencies, and skills will be required to do those jobs.

Community colleges already take steps to address the workforce needs of local employers, but their efforts often are hampered by a lack of detailed, up-to-date information about occupations and skills in demand. A promising, yet still-evolving solution to that problem can be found within the large pool of job openings posted on the Internet.

This paper discusses new sophisticated “spidering” and artificial intelligence technologies that can aggregate and analyze these online job ads and provide a more comprehensive, “real-time” source of information about the hiring and skill needs of local employers. If proven accurate and reliable, analyses of online job ads could complement traditional ways that community colleges determine labor market demand for program and course offerings.

2011
David Altstadt
Jobs for the Future

This paper discusses the importance of effective training and workforce development programs as part of a broader strategy to increase the competitiveness of American workers. Although rapid technological change and increasing global competition have delivered great economic benefits to the U.S. economy overall, the development of new and more productive industries has caused some Americans to experience significant declines in their earnings and job prospects; the Great Recession exacerbated these longer-term trends. Workers with less education and those who have been displaced from long-tenured jobs face particular challenges, and effective job training programs are an important component of policies to help these workers.

The Hamilton Project proposes two general principles that can guide policy-makers in improving training programs to aid American workers:

1) Training funds should be directed to programs with a track record of success in improving earnings for the specific target population and to those workers who can benefit the most from those programs; and

2) Training programs should directly engage employer and industry partners, or actively guide students to career-specific training.

 

 

2011
Michael Greenstone, Adam Looney
The Brookings Institute

To improve the employment rates and earnings of Americans workers, we need to create more-coherent and more-effective education and workforce development systems, focusing primarily (though not exclusively) on disadvantaged youth and adults, and with education and training more clearly targeted towards firms and sectors that provide good-paying jobs. This paper proposes a new set of competitive grants from the federal government to states that would fund training partnerships between employers in key industries, education providers, workforce agencies, and intermediaries at the state level, plus a range of other supports and services. The grants would especially reward the expansion of programs that appear successful when evaluated with randomized controlled trial (RCT) techniques. The evidence suggests that these grants could generate benefits that are several times larger than their costs, including higher earnings and lower unemployment rates among the disadvantaged.

2011
Harry J. Holzer
The Hamilton Project

Workforce3 One is an e-learning, knowledge sharing webspace that offers workforce professionals, employers, economic development, and education professionals a dynamic network featuring innovative workforce solutions. Online learning events, resource information, and tools help organizations learn how to develop strategies that enable individuals and businesses to be successful in the 21st century economy.

U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration

This comprehensive report from the Georgetown Center for Education and the Workforce highlights individual state data on the growth of jobs that will require a postsecondary credential and other labor market trends.

2010
Georgetown Center for Education and the Workforce

The first of three reports in the 2006 Pathways to Competitiveness series, this white paper lays out the definition, economic justification, process and potential of the career pathways approach.

2006
Davis Jenkins
Workforce Strategy Center