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For Immediate Release
July 29, 2014

Obama Signs Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act;
MVC Offers Allied and Public Safety Programs


California Community Colleges Chancellor Brice W. Harris welcomed President Obama to Los Angeles Trade-Technical College, in a visit that highlighted the critical role that community colleges play in developing the nation's workforce.

President Speech
Credit: Roxanne Romo, Public Relations,
Los Angeles Trade-Technical College

The president spoke on the importance of job-driven skills training. This is particularly important in the Inland Empire where community colleges are the primary producers of educated and trained workers.

In western Riverside County, Riverside Community College District's three colleges offer more than 100 Career Technical Education (CTE) certificate and degree patterns in 13 industry sectors. CTE programs are designed to provide instruction in the skills and knowledge required to enter a skilled or professional occupation.

Moreno Valley College offers one of the largest mixes of allied health and public safety programs in Southern California. The College is known for its highly regarded Physician Assistant, Dental Hygiene and Dental Assisting programs, which boast first-time national licensing pass rates of 97-100 percent. And, at the nearby Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, hundreds of students are educated to become law enforcement officers, firefighters, paramedics, emergency medical technicians, correctional officers, emergency dispatchers, probation officers, and juvenile correctional counselors.

Norco College offers over 40 high-demand occupations specializing in innovative technology programs, including California's most comprehensive suite of simulation and gaming programs and hosts the National Center for Supply Chain Technology Education. Industry-led programs in Business Administration, Engineering and Automation, Multimedia, Early Childhood Development and Information and Communication Technologies prepare students for gainful employment.

Meanwhile, RCC offers one of the largest CTE and applied technology programs in Southern California, with more than 80 certificate and degree patterns in 11 industry sectors - from RN and LVN nursing and Paralegal to Culinary Arts, Film and Television Production, Auto Technology, Air Conditioning and Welding.

For more information on CTE programs available at RCCD colleges, click on the enclosed link.

The California Community Colleges is the largest system of higher education in the nation composed of 72 districts and 112 colleges serving 2.1 million students per year. Community colleges supply workforce training, basic skills education and prepare students for transfer to four-year institutions.

President Obama's visit came two days after the he signed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) into law. WIOA is federal legislation, which seeks to improve the nation's workforce development system and job training programs. It streamlines the existing workforce development system by applying a single set of outcome metrics to every federal workforce program; creating smaller, nimbler, and more strategic state and local workforce development boards; and allowing local boards to cater their job training services to the local economic needs of a region.

The California Community Colleges supports workforce development efforts in many ways. Local community colleges throughout the state train thousands of students to enter the workforce every year and have numerous training programs that can quickly adapt to local economic needs. One of the major goals of WIOA is giving job-training centers the ability to train workers with skills that are actually in demand by employers.

In addition, the California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office Workforce and Economic Development (WED) Division helps students, incumbent workers, business partners, and industries develop skilled competencies in critical industry sectors.

As a source for developing and implementing workforce training, WED is instrumental in helping the community colleges respond quickly to labor market needs. WED programs also grow local jobs by improving regional business competitiveness and training workers with the skills they need to keep their job or to move to a higher paying position.

Also, WED, through its Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy framework, has targeted 10 economic sectors – ranging from advanced manufacturing to health and global trade – in various regions of the state in which it focuses its attention and resources in order to help foster job growth within that sector.

These efforts have helped students receive training at community colleges and matched them with employers seeking their specific job skills. WED has brought together members of the business community and academia to improve collaboration between these two groups. For more information on the California Community Colleges' effort to improve the skills and competitiveness of California's workforce, go to: