Summit to celebrate partnerships building the workforce of tomorrow today

580 200 Ed Coghlan

(Photo: USAF)

If we are going to maintain California's dominant place in the world economy, it will take teamwork.

That's the inspiration behind the second annual Partnerships for Industry and Education (PIE) Contest that was announced this week by the California Economic Summit.

“The contest honors the strong partnerships between educational institutions and employers in California,” said Jim Mayer, president and CEO of California Forward, which co-organizes the Summit. “We will surface creative and innovative programs that are demonstrating the power of collaborative efforts to build skills that lead to well-paying jobs.”

Nominations are now being accepted for organizations and individuals that are leading strategic partnerships with an educational institution and the employer community that achieve positive results.

This contest is an outgrowth of the Summit challenge of finding one million more skilled workers to meet the demands of California's robust economy.

“We attracted 30 nominations last year and expect to receive many more than that this year,” said Leah Grassini Moehle, program manager for California Forward. “We will announce an excellent judging panel later this summer.”

Contestants will be evaluated around three main characteristics:

  • Use of labor market data and the needs of the employer
  • A clear direction on common goals
  • Investments and results measure, monitored and managed to meet needs of the employer and the market.

Read about last year's winners in the 2017 PIE Contest booklet.

The California Economic Summit has emerged as the only statewide venue with a comprehensive agenda for taking on the challenges of our time: reducing income inequality, increasing economic security and community resiliency in a time of climate change, bolstering wealth generation, and restoring upward mobility.

The Summit has been working on California's workforce preparedness problem for the past seven years. The challenge of having enough skilled workers for 21st-century jobs was identified from day one as something that needs to be improved in order to protect the state's global economic standing.

The Summit's 2018 Roadmap to Shared Prosperity outlines some ambitious plans for the Summit's agenda to address the economic mobility issues facing California.

1. Creating a set of economic mobility goals consistent with California's values and holding the state accountable by tracking progress toward lifting more people out of poverty

2. Ensuring rural regions aren’t left behind. Instead, striving to address their distinct challenges and improve rural-urban economic links

3. Building a new path for every California community to become more resilient to the disruption caused by natural disasters, climate change, and the economic uncertainty of the 21st century economy

4. Continuing the Summit’s “One Million Challenges,” ongoing initiatives to close gaps in skilled workers, livable communities, and well-paying jobs

“Developing a skilled workforce is fundamental to increasing economic security for low-income Californians,” added Mayer. “The PIE program not only will honor those who are achieving results today but hopefully will inspire more private-public partnerships that can improve our workforce preparation.”

To nominate innovative partnerships for the PIE Contest, click here. Nominators are welcome to nominate partnerships they are involved in and also to nominate more than one partnership by filling out the form multiple times.

The winners will be honored and featured during the agenda at the 2018 Summit, which will be held this year in Santa Rosa November 15 and 16. Registration and information about this year's Summit can be found here.


Ed Coghlan

All stories by: Ed Coghlan