SkillsCommons Field Guide of TAACCCT Innovations: The Gallery Edition
Concurrent Session 7
In 2011, The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) invested $2 Billion in the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College Career Training (TAACCCT) initiative to improve the efficacy of post-secondary traditional, online, and hybrid workforce training programs. The foundation of the investment was an understanding that the nation’s community colleges, while providing supposed “access” to largely underserved student populations through open enrollment policies, they were not providing effective and meaningful access. The vast majority of students at these institutions do not complete their programs. They acquire significant debt but ultimately do not meet labor market needs.
Over 700 educational institutions deployed TAACCCT investments making incremental shifts in practices and curricula and sought systemic changes in how access would be provided throughout the life cycle of a student’s experience. These shifts often involved new ways of collaborating across sector and agency lines to engage education, private industry, and the DOL at national and state levels and lead to dramatically improved outcomes for community college students.
California State University’s SkillsCommons, the world’s largest repository of open and free online, hybrid, and traditional educational and workforce development materials, identified several of the most promising systemic innovations and created the SkillsCommons Field Guide of TAACCCT Innovations: The Gallery Edition. The Field Guide is a collection of online training resources designed to enable access-oriented innovations to be adapted, adopted and scaled for a variety of users. This Field Guide nomination is based on: (1) the recognition that these paradigm shifts were approaches that could likely be adapted effectively in other communities, (2) the recognition that these practices were unlikely to be broadcast widely by any other entity, and (3) how the nominee effectively packaged and enhanced these, sometimes complex, best practices in a manner that encouraged adoption and adaption. The intention of the Field Guide is to assist community colleges in providing better access and lowering costs for students seeking education and training in high-demand labor market arenas.