Carroll County Receives National Recognition for Work-based Learning Programs
The Center for Apprenticeship and Work-Based Learning in Washington, D.C. recognized Carroll County and other community, business and educational leaders in apprenticeship and work-based learning at a luncheon hosted by Jobs for the Future (JFF), a national non-profit focused on bridging educational and economic opportunity for underserved populations.
The purpose of the event was to celebrate the history and boost the momentum of the expanding movement to support apprenticeship and other forms of work-based learning as mainstream workforce development and talent solutions for American businesses.
Daniel Jackson, President/CEO of the Carroll County Chamber and Carroll Tomorrow, was on hand to accept the recognition on behalf of a cross-sector of business and educational partners throughout Carroll County who are investing resources to empower leadership and engage talent.
“These partners are working with 200 local employers in providing work-based learning opportunities for high school students, placing Carroll County as number one in student participation out of 159 counties in Georgia,” Jackson said. “One of these partners has successfully graduated over 2,000 at-risk students from high school over the last 11 years.”
According to the Center for Apprenticeship and Work-Based Learning’s recognition, “The Carroll County Chamber of Commerce and Carroll Tomorrow is an inspirational example of the local business community coming together with education and other stakeholders to connect students to real-world work experiences—at scale—to strengthen educational outcomes and ensuring a pipeline of educated and skilled workers for their community.”
Jackson pointed out that Carroll County was in good company for the honor. Among the 18 honorees were Amazon, CVS Health, The Hartford, North America’s Building Trades Unions, and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Apprenticeship.
Jackson noted that in 2013, Carroll County was chosen by the Department of Education to be featured in an assessment as part of Harvard University’s Pathways to Prosperity Initiative. While Harvard provided a very positive summary of workforce and education activity in Carroll County, Carroll Tomorrow leadership knew advances could be made.
A Blue Ribbon Task Force was created comprised of a select and diverse group of business leaders who designed a comprehensive strategic plan. The ultimate goal is to give every Carroll County student the opportunity to discover their natural gifts, skill sets, and interests to identify career pathways that will allow them to successfully pursue individual career goals.
“The vision is to create an environment that ensures every opportunity for a well-trained and highly qualified workforce,” Jackson said. “The activities that have resulted from these collaborations have led to the recognition Carroll County received from JFF.”
The JFF Center for Apprenticeship and Work-Based Learning provides expert guidance on how to identify and share effective approaches that work for companies, students, and workers. The Center also plays an important role in highlighting innovations that expand opportunities for people of color, women, opportunity youth, people with disabilities, and others who have traditionally been underrepresented in career advancement opportunities and well-paying jobs.
According to the Center, there is an unprecedented influx of federal funds and a renewed energy around expanding apprenticeship to new industries, occupations, and communities. With better access to the right information and support, the Center’s vision is to drive this movement forward, improve people’s lives, strengthen the American workforce, and provide American businesses with the skilled workers they need to grow and prosper.
Daniel Jackson (right), President and CEO of the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce and Carroll Tomorrow, accepts an award recognizing Carroll County’s efforts in work-based learning initiatives from Eric Seleznow, senior advisor at Jobs for the Future, national non-profit that builds educational and economic opportunity for underserved populations.