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By Judy Fox, Business & Entrepreneurship Regional Director, Los Angeles
L-R: Eddie Lin, Ruth Amanuel, Michael de la Cruz, Katie Mishler and Judy Fox
In August 2019 Regional Directors of Employer Engagement (RDEE) representing various priority sectors for the Los Angeles Region were offered the opportunity to take on a grant as part of a Career Pathways Specialists Project. Those who chose to accept the grant would write a proposal to utilize the grant funds to develop K-12 programs and initiatives that would address the following objectives in the LA Region:
Upon being presented with the grant opportunity, Judy Fox, RDEE Business & Entrepreneurship, Katie Mishler, RDEE Advanced Transportation & Logistics, and Ruth Amanuel, RDEE Global Trade got together to brainstorm the possibilities. Because they had already been working collaboratively on projects in supply chain and logistics, the opportunity to now bring those common threads into a K-12 space would be a strategic advantage.
They each chose to accept the grant and began to innovate. With Ruth’s operational savvy, Judy’s marketing prowess, and Katie’s broad business acumen, this powerhouse came up with something spectacular—and hard to achieve on their own.
Knowing the solution must incorporate technology, and with a familiarity of the platform, NexusEdge, Eddie Lin, it’s CEO and Founder was invited to discuss this “new” program which would utilize the NexusEdge technology. Katie, Judy, and Ruth shared with him their idea for the ProvenReady: Classroom > College > Career Program. They got right to work and together found a way to bridge the needs of students and employers with the opportunities of career pathways specialists and educators through technology.
The ProvenReady: Classroom>College>Career Program, currently in its pilot phase, connects high school students to college and career pathways while offering opportunities for students to earn industry-certified digital verification of acquired skill competencies in industries such as: Business, Entrepreneurship, Global Trade, Advanced Transportation, and Logistics.
Utilizing the NexusEdge platform and its partnerships with such entities as Canvas and LinkedIn Learning, the goal is to integrate its use in the classroom, as it ensures timely and relevant content essential for preparing the future workforce, today. Not only does it provide modern and fun skill-to-career matching assessments, it connects students to applicable community colleges.
Lessons and assessments from employers can also be augmented by instructional materials uploaded by the high school instructor for continuity between classroom and career content, and to facilitate articulated classes or those which offer dual enrollment to high school students through their local community college(s).
Grades feed right into Canvas and everyone from instructors to Career Pathways Specialists have access to easy-to-read dashboards with reports as close as a simple request. With such a comprehensive and robust offering, ProvenReady grew to incorporate the efforts of both High School and Employer Engagement Specialists who focus on on-boarding students and engaging employers in the LA Region.
The advantages don’t just end there. As an additional feature of the ProvenReady Program, Career Pathway Specialists, as well as high school and community college instructors from the advanced transportation, logistics, entrepreneurship, business, and global/international trade programs are invited to participate in professional development opportunities. The first of which has set the bar very high.
On October 8, 2019, nearly 80 educators from across the Los Angeles region were invited to participate in “Tech, Teach, & Tour Day at Google,” held on the Google Campus in Venice. To everyone’s delight, Michael de la Cruz, Global Head of Google Education, flew to Venice to participate in the event. The day consisted of introductions to the ProvenReady Program, hands-on G-suite certification practice, insights from a diverse Google career panel, fascinating Q&A, regional networking, and a site tour.
For now, the team is focusing on ensuring the pilot is poised to meet all of its initial metrics before a full-scale launch is made. As the ProvenReady program continues to grow and evolve, the goal is to expand the sector-specific content into additional employment areas and deploy in other regions.