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Chambers Mobilizing Towards Goal 2025

Jessie Azrilian on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 at 3:00:00 pm 

By 2020, the US Economy is predicted to have 55 million available jobs, and 65% of those jobs will require some form of post-secondary education. The fastest growing industries in STEM will require significant levels of education after high school. Evidence from employers surveyed across the country shows an alarming gap between the availability of jobs and workers with the skills to fill them. If current trends continue, these skills gaps are predicted to grow into massive labor shortages.

Big Goal

As the aggregate voice of local business needs, chambers of commerce are partnering with higher education institutions and community stakeholders, in order to equip the future workforce with the skills needed for college and career success. 

Embracing Lumina Foundation's national effort to increase the percentage of Americans with degrees and high-quality credentials to 60 percent by the year 2025, ACCE launched a competitive awards program providing member-chambers a one-time $40,000 award to advance existing post-secondary education initiatives.

While approaches among awardees vary from championing career-themed high schools to launching training programs for healthcare workers, these chambers all demonstrate a history of sustained engagement in moving the needle on regional education outcomes. Through interviews, reports, and peer-to-peer sharing, leadership from the seven winning chambers have provided insights into what it takes to ensure students have the skills needed for success and employers have the talented workforce they demand.

Awardee Interviews

The Goal 2025 blog series will feature one winning chamber each week in order to highlight successes, challenges, and opportunities identified throughout this awards program that can help other chambers build scalable and replicable programs and policies.

Follow the series each week to learn how chamber-led initiatives like Pathways to Prosperity and Talent4Tomorrow are connecting the current and future workforce to high-demand, high-wage skills and careers.

The 2015-16 awards application will launch April 27.

Tags: postsecondary, skills gap, Workforce Development, Big Goal, education, Education Attainment Division, Goal 2025, higher education, Lumina

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