On Tuesday, November 30th, the MAX Academy focused on training in high demand fields through local anchor institutions located throughout Georgia: High Schools and Technical Colleges.
Special thanks to MAX board member Dr. Ray Perren, Deputy Commissioner with the Technical College System of Georgia for leading the Academy. Dr. Perren was joined by the following speakers: Dr. Cayanna Good, Assistant Commissioner for Adult Education, Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG), Bobby Creech, Director of Instructional Services, Technical College System of Georgia, Stephanie Rooks, Vice President of Adult Education, Gwinnett Technical College, Lisa Shaw, Vice President of Adult Education, Georgia Northwestern Technical College, Laura Bowell, Work-based Learning Specialist, Georgia Department of Education (GDOE), Patrick Ledford, Economic Development Liaison, Georgia Department of Education, and Trudy Smith, Development and Training Program Manager, Georgia Department of Education. MAX extends our sincere gratitude to each of these speakers for joining us for an insightful workshop.
The Academy kicked off with a review of Integrated Education and Training (IET) with TCSG’s Dr. Cayanna Good. Dr. Good explained how IET became a new service approach in 2017 that replaced traditional adult literacy programs with adult education and literacy activities that run concurrently with workforce preparation and training activities. Following are some of the key points she made:
- IET helps adult learners who hunger for a better life overcome a variety of barriers to employment by helping them learn English, gain citizenship, earn high school equivalency, or develop workforce skills to secure jobs that offer family sustaining wages.
- IET is occupational training that leads to an industry or national recognized workforce credential coupled with education that leads to high school equivalency or English language instruction.
- Georgia is home to 28 adult education providers (28 technical colleges, 4 school districts, 4 community based organizations) and each one is required to provide IET services.
- IET must be aligned to workforce needs, responsive to the community, held collaboration with stakeholders and partners, intentional and held within specific timeframe, and contextualized in a way that leads to industry recognized credential to land job in chosen field. From Forklift, Welding, and Truck Driving to Customer Service, Medical Assisting, and Phlebotomy, IET is focused on connecting adult learners with career opportunities in high demand occupations.
Following Dr. Good’s review of IET. GDOE’s Laura Boswell reviewed Georgia’s Work-based Learning Program sponsored by GDOE in conjunction with the state’s 181 school districts. Boswell explained how this program is focused on putting students to work and providing a highly trained, technologically sophisticated, career-oriented workforce for business and industry. Following are some of the key points she made:
- GDOE has 17 Career Clusters – that is, broadly defined categories of industry sector areas – with specific career pathways. Each pathway is occupationally specific and organized in three (3) sequenced courses. For example, in the Manufacturing cluster, the Industrial Maintenance Pathway includes the following courses: Industrial Mechanics, Fluid Power and Piping Systems, and Electric Motor Control.
- Work-based Learning can take the form of Youth Apprenticeships, Internships, Cooperative Education, Employability Skill Development, and specialized partnerships with employers through the Great Promise Partnership.
- Benefits to employers include: reduction in the cost of training and recruitment, communication of job-specific proficiencies with educational personnel, and the ability to hire entry-level workers who already have a vested interest in the company and know necessary skills and expectations.
- Community benefits include an increase on the realization of return on investment for K-12 funding, retention of local talent, growing a viable workforce that is attractive to both new and existing industry, and a growth in tax base.
Following the discussions by Dr. Good and Boswell, all the speakers joined in a combined panel to discuss the efforts underway to connect adult learners and students with meaningful career pathways through the Technical College and High School infrastructure. Special thanks to MAX Provider Council Chair Dana Inman, President & CEO with the Atlanta Center for Self Sufficiency, for moderating the panel discussion.
RECORDING OF WORKSHOP
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ABOUT THE MAX ACADEMY
Launched in 2014, the mission of MAX is to advance economic competitiveness in the Atlanta region by strengthening connections, collaborations, and practices among workforce developers and organizations engaged in workforce development.
The MAX Academy offers professional development and capacity building training workshops to help workforce development professionals develop new skills, learn best practices, and engage in peer-to-peer learning.