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It’s one thing to be trained for one of the million-plus middle-skill jobs available in California. It’s another thing to find and land one of those jobs.
To help students do just that, an exciting new pilot program connects the career site LinkedIn with a coalition of Southern California colleges offering trade and logistics programs.
The program is a partnership between the Global Trade and Logistics Regional Consortia, LinkedIn, and a virtual career services platform, NexusEdge.
Working with LinkedIn makes sense at every level. There are 500 million people on LinkedIn and millions of available jobs on it.
Students will benefit from a Digital Badging project with LinkedIn that will build an online platform to share student competencies with potential employers.
Access to additional career resources and employers is critical for community college students working toward landing a job in the sector.
“Students in the consortium of community colleges will be given access to the NexusEdge platform to track their certifications, mentoring relationships, and courses related to their career interests,” said Farhan Syed, director of academic and government sales for Lynda.com. “LinkedIn will be providing 1,000 licenses to the Lynda.com library, which contains thousands of courses on business, technical, and creative topics designed to prepare the student to become great at what they want to do for their career.”
The colleges in the Consortia are all in Los Angeles and Orange County. Similar programs are under development to be introduced in the San Francisco Bay Area and in the far north region of California later this year.
California ranks first in the nation for exporting computers, electronic products, food and related products, and exports to approximately 225 foreign markets with the top three trading partners – Mexico, Canada, and China.
“Community colleges have the students; our students have the drive; and that drive will be a competitive asset for them and for employers in the ever-evolving fields of logistics, digital technology and small business,” said Sydney Kamlager-Dove, a trustee at the Los Angeles Community College District. “This is an important new relationship that reinforces community colleges are the place to be.”
More than 47,000 California firms are connected to logistics and supply chain activities. Together, these firms employ over three million people. A 2014 report from Material Handling Industry said the logistics industry would need to fill 1.4 million jobs in the U.S. by 2018.
“I've long supported the additional investment in Career Technical Education and am pleased that this regional program addresses the many career opportunities the global trade and logistics sector affords students in Southern California,” said Assemblywoman Autumn Burke (D-Inglewood) whose district includes some of the colleges in the consortia. “Being able to attract partners like LinkedIn is a bonus that can help our students find those middle-skills jobs more quickly.”
California’s economy is now the sixth largest in the world, and trade and logistics plays a huge role in our economy. That’s a reason why the sector has been identified by the Strong Workforce program of the California Community Colleges, which is investing an additional $200 million in CTE funding across California to meet the middle-skills challenge.
“The skill need is great. We are taking advantage of our scale by having ten colleges step in to undertake the skills-building work to deliver a strong workforce for this important sector,” added Van Ton-Quinlivan, Vice Chancellor for Workforce and the Economy.
“The ability for students to acquire internships and meet people in the industry simply adds to their ability to be hired,” said Rick Hodge, dean of CTE and workforce development at L.A. Southwest College. “It’s a win-win for employers and students alike.”