Thursday, February 7, 2013

CCC Chancellor Brice Harris on Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy

The following is a memo from Chancellor Brice Harris to Community College Leadership:
Dr. Brice Harris

February 7, 2013

Dear Colleagues:

California is starting its comeback after the severe economic downturn, and our community colleges are well positioned to again lead the way in training needed for our rebounding economy.

We do a tremendous job of preparing our students to enter the labor market, but we can and must do better. As employers adjust to the fast paced shifts in expanding and emerging markets, we too must adapt to these changes and strive to meet the labor needs of the new economy.

Today’s economic and political realities require us to collaborate regionally and even across regions to ensure that employers have the workforce needed to grow their businesses, hire more of our students and ignite growth everywhere in California. In today’s world, businesses that compete against each other for market share are coming together regionally to address common challenges involving workforce needs. We need to work in the same fashion.

You will see increased attention to this strategy from my office. Initially, you will see a series of administrative changes put into place under the “Doing What Matters for Jobs and Economy” initiative led by the Chancellor’s Office.  These are mandated by last year’s reauthorization of SB 1042 (Lieu) and SB 1070 (Steinberg).

To help you explain how this improved approach will impact and create opportunities for your college community, I’m enclosing talking points that I am using to explain this initiative as well as answers to frequently asked questions.

This is just the start. We must engage in more conversations. My executive staff, along with a great deal of support from my friend and colleague, Dianne Van Hook, Chancellor, Santa Clarita Community College District, are working to coordinate forums to discuss this initiative and move our economy forward.

Brice W. Harris
Chancellor, California Community Colleges

Among the good news for ICT within this strategic initiative:

  • Digital literacy is increasingly being acknowledged in Basic Skills discussions
  • ICT/Digital Media has been acknowledged as a strategic sector for CCCs
  • ICT/Digital Media was the 2nd most popular strategic sector selection by CCC Regional Consortia (behind Healthcare)
    • A "Priority" sector for:
      • the San Francisco/San Mateo, Silicon Valley and Santa Cruz subregions of the Bay Area Regional Consortium, and
      • the Mother Lode subregion of the Central Regional Consortium.
    • An "Emergent" sector selection for all other CCC Regional Consortia, except the Central Valley subregion of the Central Regional Consortium.
MPICT and the CCC ICT Collaborative will continue to advocate for ICT and ICT education and workforce development in California, and we view these changes very favorably.  We'll keep you posted!

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