Posts Tagged ‘high-demand jobs’

ECMCF Fellow Feature: Yolanda Flores

Friday, September 29th, 2023

In September 2022, Advance CTE and ECMC Foundation announced the second cohort of The Postsecondary State Career Technical Education (CTE) Leaders Fellowship at Advance CTE—Sponsored by ECMC Foundation. The Advance CTE — ECMCF Fellows include representation across multiple demographic categories reflecting the Fellowship’s goal of intentionally building a postsecondary leadership pipeline for underserved populations in Career Technical Education (CTE) that closes racial representation gaps and removes equity barriers to postsecondary leadership advancement. 

This month, we’re excited to highlight two members of Advance CTE’s second cohort of Postsecondary State CTE Leaders Fellows. In our interview with ECMCF Fellow Yolanda Flores (FL), she talked about how she’s already leveraging what she learned in the Fellowship to create more cohesive and industry-aligned programs.

Tell me more about your journey to the Fellowship.

I discovered the Fellowship by accident. The Florida Association for Career and Technical Education included the call for applicants in an email, and as someone who is constantly searching for opportunities to grow my skills to serve my students, I was immediately interested. I met Dr. Kevin Johnson during the informational webinar, and I felt like the Fellowship’s focus and curriculum topics were aligned with my professional goals.

What skills or areas have you experienced the most growth in the program? 

The number one thing that I’ve learned is the value of mentorship and working with my coach. Advance CTE staff provided some suggestions for our monthly meetings, such as sharing updates on the real-world project and the workshop topics, but then my coach and I would also talk about things that are going on outside of the Fellowship and the work that my coach is doing. In a lot of ways, we were able to bounce ideas off each other and this thought partnership has been critical in my professional development. 

This relationship also allowed me to travel to Seattle for Jobs for the Future’s convening. All of the attendees and participating organizations were exploring different models of career pathways. I discovered an apprenticeship model that operates as a third-party entity, coordinating the various providers involved with implementing the program. This model was developed to be very flexible and prioritized accessibility for all students. I walked away feeling inspired with knowledge about how I can recreate and replicate these best practices for my students back in Collier County.  

How has your experience in the Fellowship helped you explore new spaces or positions in postsecondary state CTE leadership? 

The national focus of this Fellowship has been incredibly valuable. I’m learning an immense amount during workshops from leaders from across the nation and the perspectives of my colleagues in the Fellowship. I am eager to take this momentum and find additional opportunities to leverage my experience in a way that continues to make a meaningful impact for learners. Coming from the district level, this experience and knowledge are crucial because, without it, I’m worried that I would not be considered for more advanced roles.

I’ve set up my LLC, Workforce Wise Solutions, to take on additional consulting work to continue to develop my skills and build my portfolio of work. I am working closely with the Florida Institute for Professional Development for Adult Educators. This work is closely aligned with my real-world project topic, of increasing access to CTE for adult learners particularly those for whom English is not their first language.

The topic of my real-world project is about increasing access to high-wage, high-skill, in-demand CTE career pathways in manufacturing for adult education participants. Through my project, I’ve been able to engage more with the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), Perkins and Florida Blueprint 2030 and understand how adult education programs interact in these spaces. I’ve been able to review our Perkins data, which includes data on our underserved populations and English for Speakers of Other Languages population, and the progress that we’re making in supporting these learners as they transition from adult education to CTE programs. I coordinated a professional development group where staff from the CTE programs, adult education, and business partners came together to learn about how they could better align their programs. As a result of this process, I was able to write a grant proposal that identified the ways in which our local providers are prepared to work and design their programs in alignment with industry needs. My proposal for this Equitable Pipeline Grant would allow us to propose a manufacturing IET, integrated education and training program. This program will then help prepare our adult education learners with a foundation for understanding manufacturing concepts with the goal of eventually transitioning into one of our full-time programs or going into a position where they can be upskilled. I did receive the Equitable Pipeline Grant for $122,000 and another $60,000 to provide scholarships to adult education students enrolled in Nursing Assistant and ParaPro.

Another benefit of this Fellowship has been learning more about the wealth of organizations that exist in this space and the work they’re engaged in around CTE. I would love to learn more about best practices for communicating the findings from this work to local practitioners. How can we, as directors or program leaders, ensure that our programs are being developed with the knowledge of what has worked elsewhere. Building this awareness is a huge opportunity to lean in, and I believe the impact could be significant.

How has the Fellowship expanded your network? 

I have a great group of Fellows that are helpful for bouncing ideas off each other. Also, I’ve found that the assigned accountability buddies have given us permission to reach out and have conversations about our work and the challenges we might be experiencing. My buddy has been a source of encouragement, and I’m not sure we would have independently taken steps to make those connections. 

I’ve also enjoyed the relationship and support I’ve received from the Advance CTE staff. Dr. Stephanie Perkins’ feedback has been so helpful and available to meet as needed for additional support to complete my real-world project. 

The opportunities to engage with state leaders and national organizations have been great. I’m eager to take advantage of these platforms, such as the ECMCF Convening in Denver, to elevate my work. 

By Layla Alagic in Achieving Equitable and Inclusive CTE
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Advance CTE Fall Meeting Sponsor Blog: Diamond Sponsor, SME Education Foundation – Manufacturing CTE’s Role in Job Creation

Wednesday, September 27th, 2023

In the next decade, job seekers in manufacturing will find plenty of openings. It’s projected that nearly 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will need to be filled in the next 10 years. The challenge, however, is that there aren’t enough qualified workers to fill the positions. An aging workforce, changing technologies and misperceptions about the industry all contribute to the shortage. This has serious consequences for the manufacturing industry, which is overwhelmingly not prepared. In fact, nearly nine out of 10 manufacturers say that their company is having problems finding skilled workers in manufacturing. When it comes to filling this pipeline of manufacturing talent, state Career Technical Education (CTE) leaders play an essential role in developing the next generation. 

It is important for industry and education to partner together to bring industry-relevant knowledge and skills to the classroom. Aside from learners, manufacturers are the most important customers of CTE programs, and programs should be aligned with the skills manufacturers need and want.  

It’s critical to embed manufacturers into the education process to ensure the curriculum and equipment align with their needs, asking questions such as: What is the market need? Which positions need to be filled? Which machines are you using? Which skills do you require? Which type of training programs do you use? Which certifications do you need?

Matching your state’s programs to local industry needs will ensure well-trained learners from your schools are in demand. Moreover, it can also lead to other opportunities like on-site tours, mentoring, equipment donations, internships, jobs, and even funding. 

Organizations like the SME Education Foundation are valuable partners in such a process. The Foundation’s signature program, SME PRIME®, is predicated on partnering private industry with educators to build transformational hands-on manufacturing education experiences.  Informed by private industry, SME PRIME® builds customized manufacturing and engineering programs in high schools across the country, providing equipment, curriculum, teacher training, student scholarships and funding for extra-curricular activities and program sustainability. SME PRIME® is tailored to meet the needs of local manufacturers and is aligned with over 30 industry-recognized certifications. 

In the past few years, the SME Education Foundation has partnered with both the Michigan Department of Education and the Georgia Department of Education to introduce SME PRIME® to dozens of high schools across each state, engaging hundreds of manufacturers in the process. Nationwide, SME PRIME® provides manufacturing and engineering education to more than 10,000 students at 109 schools in 23 states, and 91 percent of graduates pursue manufacturing post-graduation. Visit the SME Prime® webpage to learn more. 

The bottom line is that manufacturers and CTE leaders can move forward together to elevate CTE’s impact for a generation of learners. 

Rob Luce, Vice President, SME Education Foundation 

By Layla Alagic in Advance CTE Fall Meeting
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Legislative Update: Budget, ED Priorities, DOL Priorities

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

House Marks Up Budget Resolution

Rep. Paul Ryan Chairman of the House Budget Committee released his budget resolution this week, which will serve as a blueprint for the House as the appropriations process moves forward. The budget passed committee by a vote of 19-18. The resolution sets the FY13 discretionary cap at $1.028 trillion, which is $19 billion below the cap set by the Budget Control Act last summer. The proposal would cut education, training, employment, and social services programs by $16.4 billion, which is 22 percent below FY12 levels. The resolution specifically targets Federal job training and workforce programs, calling them duplicative, and proposing to streamline the system and consolidate existing programs into “career scholarship programs.”

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (NV) has said that the Senate will adhere to the spending levels set in the Budget Control Act and will not release a budget resolution.

Secretary Duncan Testifies Before Congress

Secretary of Education Arne Duncan testified before the House Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee yesterday to discuss the budget and policy priorities of Department of Education.  Duncan spoke about some CTE-specific proposals such as increased funding for career academies and community colleges. He also addressed the need to reauthorize the Perkins Act:

The Administration’s reauthorization proposal would transform CTE by increasing the focus on outcomes and career pathways that ensure that what students learn in school is more closely aligned with the demands of the 21st century economy, while creating stronger linkages between secondary and postsecondary education. The proposal would also promote innovation and reform in CTE.

A number of members, from both sides of the aisle, expressed concern that the President’s budget would cut or freeze existing programs, in exchange for funding new programs such as the Community College to Career Fund.

Secretary Solis Testifies Before Congress

Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis testified before the House Education and the Workforce Committee this week about the budget and policy priorities of the Department of Labor. Solis began her testimony by saying that the labor market grew stronger last year, and that over 2 million private sector jobs were created, while the unemployment rate fell in 48 states. However, there is still work to be done and the President’s budget outlines the steps his administration intends to take to address unemployment and the skills gap.

As we told you after the President’s State of the Union address, he plans to create an “economy built to last,” founded on strengthening manufacturing, energy, education, and skills training for individuals. Secretary Solis outlined the proposed programs in the President’s budget that would help address these issues. For example, the Community College to Career Fund would help community colleges to partner with business and industry to develop training programs for workers to enter high growth and high demand industries that meet the needs of local employers.

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager

 

By admin in Legislation, Public Policy
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Check Out the Skills that Work Toolkit

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Many young people today struggle to connect their education and skills with the job market. That’s why Young Invincibles, a policy and advocacy organization, created the Skills that Work toolkit. It provides job market information for each state in a format to help young people understand their options.

These resources can also be shared with Members of Congress when advocating for Perkins and CTE. For example, the toolkit lists the top ten fastest growing jobs in your state over the next decade that require a 2-year or 4-year degree.  Follow the link to the Skills that Work Website to find out more.

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager

By admin in Public Policy
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NASDCTEc Webinar Today – Keeping Adult Learners Competitive for High-Demand Jobs

Thursday, December 8th, 2011

In today’s turbulent economy, how can adult workers best position themselves to succeed in rewarding careers in high-demand fields? Further, how can employers aid in up-skilling current employees to meet increasingly complex job demands?

To explore these questions in greater depth, we will be hosting a webinar this afternoon called “CTE: Keeping Adult Learners Competitive for High-Demand Jobs.” The webinar accompanies the release of NASDCTEc’s latest issue brief of the same title.

Click here to register for today’s webinar.

When: Today – Thursday, December 8th from 3:00 – 4:00 pm EST

Dr. Ron Duggins, Director of the Center for Business Development at Oklahoma’s Meridian Technology Center, will discuss Meridian’s Business Incubator program and how it helps adult entrepreneurs to launch successful businesses.

Mr. Harry Snyder, Adult Workforce Development Supervisor at Great Oaks Institute of Technology and Career Development in Ohio, will describe how Great Oaks’ Aviation Maintenance – Power Plant Technician class is preparing adults for high-demand jobs and meeting the needs of area businesses.

We hope you can join us this afternoon!

Kara Herbertson, Education Policy Analyst

By admin in Publications, Webinars
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Register Now for CTE Webinar This Thursday – Keeping Adult Learners Competitive for High-Demand Jobs

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

In today’s turbulent economy, how can adult workers best position themselves to succeed in rewarding careers in high-demand fields? Further, how can employers aid in up-skilling current employees to meet increasingly complex job demands?

To explore these questions in greater depth, we will be hosting a webinar this Thursday called “CTE: Keeping Adult Learners Competitive for High-Demand Jobs.” The webinar accompanies the release of a new issue brief of the same title that will be available on Thursday.

When: Thursday, December 8th from 3:00 – 4:00 pm EST

Click here to register.

Dr. Ron Duggins, Director of the Center for Business Development at Oklahoma’s Meridian Technology Center, will discuss Meridian’s Business Incubator program and how it helps adult entrepreneurs to launch successful businesses.

Mr. Harry Snyder, Adult Workforce Development Director at Great Oaks Institute of Technology and Career Development in Ohio, will describe how Great Oaks’ Aviation Maintenance – Power Plant Technician class is preparing adults for high-demand jobs and meeting the needs of area businesses.

 

By admin in Webinars
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Most Manufacturing Executives Report a Shortage of Qualified Workers, Survey Shows

Thursday, November 3rd, 2011

A recent national survey from the Manufacturing Institute, an organization focused on improving and expanding manufacturing in the United States, delves deeper into the “skills gap” issue and examines how industry leaders are responding to this challenge.

Of the thousand manufacturing executives who completed the Manufacturing Institute’s survey, nearly 70 percent reported that they have a moderate or severe shortage of available, highly-qualified workers. Over half expect the shortage to worsen within the next five years. Further, over 60 percent of executives stated that shortages and skill deficiencies are having a profound impact on their companies’ ability to expand and improve.

Manufacturing Institute President Emily DeRocco stated that students and their parents have a limited understanding of the jobs that are available in manufacturing today, partly due to the stigma around the low-skilled manufacturing jobs of the last century. However, today’s manufacturing jobs require more complex skills, like high-level technology and computer skills, and are situated in much better work environments.

Many executives reported that available jobs are in areas of “skilled production,” such as machinists, operators, distributors, and technicians. DeRocco suggests that companies partner with educational institutions, such as CTE schools and centers, to further align education and training to meet the needs of business and industry.

Through the Manufacturing Career Cluster, Career Technical Education (CTE) programs provide a response to manufacturers’ demands by educating students through career pathways that lead to industry-recognized credentials. Still, more students are needed to overcome this skills gap by training in advanced manufacturing programs of study (POS) and acquiring the skills needed to pursue positions in manufacturing.

The Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte provide an analysis of the survey results in Boiling Point? The Skills Gap in U.S. Manufacturing.

Kara Herbertson, Education Policy Analyst

 

By admin in News, Publications, Research
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NASDCTEc Webinar – CTE: Keeping Adult Learners Competitive for High-Demand Jobs

Monday, October 24th, 2011

In today’s turbulent economy, how can adult workers best position themselves to succeed in rewarding careers in high-demand fields? Further, how can employers aid in up-skilling current employees to meet increasingly complex job demands?

Join us for our next webinar, “CTE: Keeping Adult Learners Competitive for High-Demand Jobs,” on Thursday, December 8th from 3:00 – 4:00 pm, when experts from the field will help us answer these questions by describing how their programs directly and indirectly keep adult learners competitive for high-demand jobs.

Dr. Ron Duggins, Director of the Center for Business Development at Oklahoma’s Meridian Technology Center, will discuss Meridian’s Business Incubator program and how it helps adult entrepreneurs to launch successful businesses. Mr. Harry Snyder, Adult Workforce Development Supervisor at Great Oaks Institute of Technology and Career Development in Ohio, will describe how Great Oaks’ Aviation Maintenance – Power Plant Technician class is preparing adults for high-demand jobs and meeting the needs of area businesses.

Date: Thursday, December 8, 2011
Time: 3:00 – 4:00 pm ET
Click here to register for “CTE: Keeping Adult Learners Competitive for High-Demand Jobs.”

Kara Herbertson, Education Policy Analyst

By admin in Resources, Webinars
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