Distance Learning

Community Colleges and Employers Develop Online Course Content To Address High-Need Skills Gap

CorpU, a social learning platform, and Jobs for the Future, a national nonprofit that focuses on addressing workforce demands, have assembled the College Employer Collaborative (CEC), a group of community colleges and employers that will work with CorpU to develop college curricula and credentials intended to meet the needs of high-growth industries.

According to a recent Gallup survey, approximately one third of business leaders think college and university graduates don't have the skills that meet their business needs. The CEC aims to help rectify the situation by developing online courses geared toward the skills employers are looking for in employees.

"Community colleges have always been a critical pipeline of talent," said Brian Inbody, president of Neosho County Community College, in a prepared statement. "By working with employers to actually develop course content, we are able to help students develop high-demand skills in the context of a meaningful academic environment."

The CEC will meet in mid-June to begin designing the courses. Employers and CorpU learning designers will work together to develop the courses using CorpU's social learning platform. Colleges will integrate the online course content into their on-campus courses beginning in the Fall 2015 semester. According to information from CorpU and Jobs for the Future, "students who successfully complete the courses will earn a credential recognized by employers in the Collaborative, which signals their mastery of these critical skills."

Community college members of the CEC include Neosho County Community College in Kansas, Everett Community College in Washington State, LaGuardia Community College in New York and Alamo Colleges in Texas. Employer members include AGCO, Boeing, MetLife Premier Client Group, The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, Waddell & Reed and Securian Financial Group.

GAMA International, a professional development association for leadership and management professionals in the insurance, investment and financial services industry, helped to convene the employers that have joined the CEC.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at leilameyer@gmail.com.

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