The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

By Lily Martin
Staff writer 

Clovis Community College one of seven selected for rural workforce initiative


Last updated 2/23/2021 at 3:57pm

CLOVIS — Clovis Community College was one of seven colleges selected nationwide to participate in a rural workforce initiative.

Building Resiliency in Rural Communities for the Future of Work is a program run by Achieving the Dream, a non-governmental nonprofit that helps reform institutions of higher education. This rural initiative is designed to buildup colleges’ existing career readiness programs to help prepare students for success.

“Building Resiliency in Rural Communities for the Future of Work capitalizes on the localness of community colleges as stable, flexible, and respected organizations to catalyze efforts to build socially just and economically prosperous communities,” Achieving the Dream’s website reads.

President and CEO of Achieving the Dream Karen Stout said in a press release that rural community colleges are imperative to their surrounding communities’ economy and vitality.

“As Achieving the Dream works to support our colleges in fostering diverse and equitable campuses, we are mindful of the importance of building a network that reflects the diversity of institutions across our country. This initiative adds to ATD’s experience working with other rural colleges in our network as well as the nation’s tribal colleges and universities, offering new learning opportunities around the role of rural community colleges as workforce and economic development engines,” Stout said.

Being a part of this group will expand CCC’s student resources for workforce skills, digital careers, and all-around efforts to narrow equity gaps and provide support.

“Clovis Community College is thrilled to be selected to join the Achieving the Dream initiative,” CCC President Charles Nwankwo said. “We are so honored to have been selected and look forward to this journey to ignite the future of education for CCC and its surrounding communities. This endeavor has the potential to open doors and job opportunities for our students who are preparing to enter into the workforce.”

Other colleges participating in this effort include Berkshire Community College in Massachusetts, Columbia-Greene Community College in New York, Halifax Community College in North Carolina, Louisiana State University-Eunice in Louisiana, Northwest Mississippi Community College in Mississippi, and Southeast Kentucky Community and Technology College in Kentucky.

In the press release a spokesman for J.P. Morgan Chase highlighted how the initiative would expand inclusivity in diverse areas.

“Equitable access to skills and real-world work experience is key to connecting students to good jobs, regardless of their ZIP code,” Monique Baptiste, Vice President of Global Philanthropy at JPMorgan Chase said. “As part of JPMorgan Chase’s efforts to advance racial equity and prepare people for the future of work, we’re committed to driving an inclusive economic recovery, including strengthening community college programs and connecting students to the skills needed to succeed in today’s workforce.”

Members of participating colleges met virtually in January to learn more about the program and Achieving the Dream. They will meet again this summer, and will continually attend coaching and capacity programming.


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