(GREATER MEMPHIS CHAMBER RELEASE) – The Chamber today announced a partnership with the Division of College, Career and Technical Education (CCTE) of Shelby County Schools. Through the agreement, a Chamber representative will serve on an advisory committee to help plan, evaluate, implement and continuously improve the district’s career pathways training programs.
“In our work to create transformational change in this city, it is critical to have the full weight of the business community committed to helping guide, shape and support our state’s largest school system,” said Beverly Robertson, President & CEO of the Greater Memphis Chamber. “As the voice of the business community, we can help ensure that the training programs available in our schools are training our children for the jobs available in the marketplace today and equipping them with the skills they will need for the jobs that will be available in the future.”
Sixteen Chamber member companies have signed on to partner with CCTE as part of a new effort to enhance the district’s offering around certificate programs that can provide alternative career pathway options for students.
“Our partnership with Greater Memphis Chamber will open doors for both our students and Shelby County employers. To ensure the success of our students, our neighborhoods, and our economy, we must continue to work together to train our students to excel in today’s high-demand jobs, and we are immensely grateful to President Robertson and the Chamber for providing their resources, insight, and connections.
CCTE offers 40+ pathways across all Shelby County high schools with 30+ college level courses and more than 30 career certifications available in high demand industries. In the 2017-2018 school year, CCTE produced 350 certificates. The goal for the 2018-2019 school year was 1,000, which the district has already exceeded. As of April 15, 1,873 students have received certificates through a Shelby County School CCTE program for the current school year.
“Having the business community work hand-in-hand with the district will ensure that we are aligning the needs of employers with the skills and training we are providing to our young people,” said Ernest Strickland, the Chamber’s Senior Vice President of Workforce Development.
The CCTE partnership is part of the Chamber’s Workforce & Talent Development initiative aimed at creating in alignment with the Memphis Workforce ecosystem. In October, the Chamber will convene a two-day Workforce Summit aimed at connecting 10,000 currently un or under employed individuals to vacant positions over the next two years by leveraging partnerships, training and other tools. The Workforce Summit will take place October 22-23 and will include a keynote presentation from Mark Muro, Senior Fellow and Policy Director – Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institute.