Voices and Viewpoints

Working Together for Change: Education, Workforce, and Industry

by Marianne Peacock / Dec 11, 2014

The Florida TRADE Consortium consists of 12 state and community colleges that have come together under a TAACCCT Round 2 grant with the mission to improve Florida’s advanced manufacturing training and education system. Offering access to accelerated training programs that can be completed in 3-6 months, Florida TRADE programs allow participants to upgrade current skills, learn new skills, and gain industry-recognized credentials that can lead to internships and jobs in manufacturing.

One key component of the Florida TRADE strategy is its partnership trifecta of education, workforce, and industry. Working together for change, key stakeholders have been engaged throughout the program design and implementation. These stakeholders include college presidents, academic deans, and corporate college directors; state and local workforce board representatives; and small and large manufacturers and industry associations. By coming together and collaborating, the key players are seeking transformative change in education and workforce systems. “The Florida TRADE program has really brought industry and education closer and we are now seeing job applicants, who are being prepared for, and motivated to follow a career in manufacturing,” explains Trevor Charlton, Manufacturing Manager, Pharma Works.

To learn more about this collaboration and the work being done in the Florida TRADE Consortium, read the Partnership Trifecta: Education, Workforce, and Industry brief.

What strategies are you using to engage key stakeholders in program design and implementation? How is this engagement impacting your program participants and industry partners? We would love to hear from you.

Marianne Peacock is the Project Coordinator for the Transformative Change Initiative at OCCRL. She can be reached at mpeacock@illinois.edu.

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