This year San Diego’s workforce displayed resilience, businesses showed grit and we made important advances for a more equitable future. Here’s a look at some of our top moments.
1. Career centers move in house, embarking us on a transformational transition
As of July 1, the Workforce Partnership assumed responsibility for the service delivery at our six career centers. We’re implementing changes to meet our job seekers where they are, including increased bilingual staff, support outside traditional business hours, the removal of membership requirements and more. This change also provides an opportunity to deliver more streamlined business services and support, and access to a wider array of programs and services for employers.
2. A bold vision to build our behavioral health workforce takes hold
We partnered with County Supervisor Chair, Nathan Fletcher, and assembled a steering committee of local leaders, analyzed labor market information, conducted focus groups and surveyed 1,600 behavioral health workers about their wages, job conditions, job satisfaction and more. We shared our findings at the Behavioral Health Workforce Symposium.
3. New funding paves pathways into quality jobs
Assemblymember Brian Maienschein awarded the Workforce Partnership $10 million to create and administer programs that will train qualified job seekers for careers in the healthcare and public administration sectors.
4. The Black Community Investment Fund continues to expand our impact
Through funding from the San Diego Foundation and Bank of America, we recruited Black participants for our information & communication technologies and healthcare programs to provide education, certification, on-the-job training and pathways to meaningful careers.
5. Community dialogue event increases importance of equity in the workforce
We hosted the authors Kate Markin Colem and Stephen Goldsmith of Growing Fairly: How to Build Opportunity and Equity in Workforce Development for a panel discussion to explore equitable skill building to meet current and future needs of workers and employers. The book includes examples and practical ideas for workforce development professionals, including the work done by the Workforce Partnership.
6. Job seekers share their stories
The work we do impacts thousands of individuals and we’re honored to provide a platform to share their stories. One inspiring story featured Windy, a Reentry Works participant, who shared her inspirational journey at the Prison2Employment Summit.
7. We partner in local, regional and national level conversations about policy and programs
We advanced our mission with work at the regional, state and national level. Outreach includes work in Washington D.C., with the Aspen Institute, Jobs for the Future, the ‘Workers Equity Initiative’, Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL) conference and more.
8. New outcomes-based loan increases equity in education
The UC San Diego Extended Studies & Google Career Certificates program is helping San Diegans earn certificates in business intelligence, digital marketing and front-end development. This new initiative includes a partnership with Google’s Career Certificates curriculum. Outcomes-based loans have lower barriers of entry than traditional four-year degrees and can provide access to a wider range of participants.
9. Students explore new career possibilities
In partnership with Qualcomm, we brought the world of science and engineering to Hoover High School with a day-long interactive event. Students from all backgrounds explored potential STEM careers and learned from professionals in the field.
10. Our new online tool helps job seekers find the right resources, faster
This year we launched Program Match Finder, a tool job seekers use to answer questions about their needs and interests to get connected to the right program. This removes the burden of discovery from the job seeker and gets them the support they need more quickly.