Dr. Karen Hunter Anderson, executive director of the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB), visited the Quad-Cities Campus on Wednesday, July 26, to recognize the college for excellence in workforce education and training programs. The visit was part of a statewide tour to unveil the ICCB’s Workforce Education Strategic Plan and highlight best practices across the state in workforce training.
Anderson was joined by college president Dr. Bettie Truitt, who discussed how Black Hawk College combines technical and career instruction with the development of essential employability skills necessary for success in the workforce.
“A great education includes the essential employability skills our students will need to be successful in the workforce,” Truitt said. “Having the technical skills isn’t enough any longer.”
“Employers have consistently told us they want training partners to address the deficit in workers’ essential employability skills,” Anderson said. “Black Hawk College’s approach to embedding essential employability skills into academic work is a model for community colleges across the state.”
The Workforce Education Strategic Plan will expand and enhance Illinois’ ability to attract, retrain and grow business and develop educational opportunities to support students’ success in the workforce. The plan is the culmination of regional meetings held in each of the state’s 10 economic development regions with partners from across the education, economic development and workforce sectors. The resulting plan identified four priority areas to be addressed over the next five years. These areas are:
- Increase early career-related education and exposure.
- Address essential and occupational skill gaps.
- Align education and training programs to employers’ needs.
- Strengthen connections among public partners and engagement and alignment with business.
For more information, including a copy of the Workforce Education Strategic Plan, visit ICCB organization workforce webpage.