The Economic Development and Allied Health Divisions have been awarded approximately $900,000 from the state Chancellor’s Office to fund the staffing of three new “Deputy Sector Navigators” liaison positions designed to help community colleges better connect with the industry partners they serve.
The grant award is the result of an ongoing reorganization effort of the state’s Workforce and Economic Development program titled “Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy.”
The goals of the “Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy” program are to help close the state’s “skills gap” by providing in-demand skills training for employers, creating relevant career pathways and stackable credential programs, promoting student success and ultimately helping more Californians find employment.
As part of that reorganization effort the California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office has placed a greater emphasis on regional economic development activities, with a particular focus on the strongest industry sectors for each region of the state.
“This refocus from the state Chancellor’s Office has many advantages, but two significant outcomes are apparent,” said Pete Bellas, Dean of Economic Development at the college. “First, it recognizes that industry and jobs are very much regionally based and provides opportunities for colleges in those regions to enhance their working relationships with local businesses. Second, it will provide resources dedicated to keeping community college programs in pace with industry needs.”
The newly created Deputy Sector Navigator positions will function to help California’s community colleges better connect and collaborate with each other, in addition to the thousands of local businesses and industry partners they collectively serve.
With this recently awarded grant, College of the Canyons — which has been designated as part of the state’s South Central region — will be able to host three Deputy Sector Navigator liaison positions in the areas of advanced manufacturing, information communication technology/digital media, and allied health.
These individuals will be responsible for working with industry partners and representatives at other community colleges in the region to help leverage state funding to provide continued skills development training for these key industry sectors.
The navigator positions will also help connect those same industry partners with educators in community colleges, and at local high schools and junior highs, in order to better align potential career pathways with current curriculum and instruction methods, while improve student learning outcomes.
The following Deputy Sector Navigator positions have been filled at College of the Canyons, effective immediately: