February 16, 2018

Paul Feist

Office: 916.327.5353

E-mail: pfeist@cccco.edu

Sacramento, Calif. – California Community Colleges Chancellor Eloy Ortiz Oakley announced a series of upcoming meetings around the state to gather input from employers, workforce development professionals, college audiences, community organizations and representatives of organized labor to discuss the future of work and how to serve workers who cannot access brick and mortar colleges.

Topics of the regional events align with Gov. Jerry Brown’s budget proposal to establish a new online community college to provide skills and short-term certificates to millions of working adults who cannot access traditional community college programs because of work or family obligations.

“Today in California, millions of adult workers find themselves economically and educationally stranded,” Oakley said. “The rapid rise of technologies such as automation and artificial intelligence is transforming the skills necessary to succeed in the workforce of today and the future. We need to level the playing field for adult learners who have been left behind by traditional approaches to post-secondary education.”

A report on California employers by the Society of Human Resource Management in 2016 revealed that 64 percent of employers seeking workers in skilled trades had difficulty filling the roles. The skills gap is compounded by the fact that California has 2.5 million adults in the prime working ages of 25 to 34 that have only a high school diploma or some college but no degree, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Another 6.2 million adults between the ages of 35 to 65 years old have a high school diploma but no college degree.

The 2018 Future of Work MeetUps seek to gain insight from leaders in business and industry, education, workforce development, community-based organizations, labor, and policy makers about the skills challenges, the future of work and technology-enabled solutions to close the skills gap.

The events are a collaborative effort by the California Community Colleges, California Forward, the California Economic Summit, the Institute for the Future and leaders in workforce and education who are hosting the events across California.

In addition to this series of MeetUps, all California employers are encouraged to take a 10-question survey to provide the California Community Colleges with information on skillsets most important to them, as well as their understanding of how career education can play a role in upskilling workers. Employers can share with employees an anonymous survey designed to provide insight into what programs are needed to better support adults who need additional skills and college credentials.

Seating is limited at these regional events. To find a full schedule and to secure a seat or for information on future listening event series, including events engaging faculty and working learners, go to http://doingwhatmatters-2018meetups.com/. If you are interested in hosting an event, contact Leah Moehle at leah@CAFWD.org.

For information about online community college visit www.ccconlinecollege.org.

The California Community Colleges is the largest system of higher education in the nation, composed of 72 districts and 114 colleges serving 2.1 million students per year. California community colleges provide career education and workforce training; guaranteed transfer to four-year universities; degree and certificate pathways; and basic skills education in English and math. As the state’s engine for social and economic mobility, the California Community Colleges supports the Vision for Success, a strategic plan designed to improve student success outcomes, increase transfer rates and eliminate achievement gaps. For more information, please visit the California Community Colleges website or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.