By Jeff Harris
In last night's debate between President Obama and Governor Romney, both candidates agreed that community colleges working closely with businesses play a key role in creating jobs. Some questions remain about what these sorts of partnerships might look like, what role the government could play, and why community colleges are uniquely positioned to help train workers.
We are working on this issue through our Skills for America's Future Program which is an employer-led initiative of the Institute, created to foster partnerships between employers and community colleges to address America’s pressing jobs issue. According to Skills, there are several reasons community colleges are the right place to train workers in partnership with businesses:
- Community colleges are well-suited to address the lack of well-trained, skilled and certified workers across the country.
- Community colleges are located in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Regardless of their location, businesses can find a community college partner nearby to help them with their job training needs.
- In many cases, community colleges are more flexible than other educational institutions in changing their class offerings, class times and even class locations to meet the needs of local employers and workforce.
- Community colleges generally have open admissions. The overwhelming majority of potential workers are eligible to take classes at community colleges.
Learn more about the work of Skills for America's Future here.