Leading at home
Learning from each other

Five Partnerships in the 2022 Cohort

Five partnerships serving rural communities and regions are leading efforts to improve higher education and workforce outcomes for their residents.  Selected through a national request for partnership, these five possessed the stakeholder relationships, capacities, and capabilities to make real and sustained change in their communities.  

Together, they will learn and work alongside their colleagues from across the nation.  Individually, they will collaborate with partners from the public, private, and social sectors to connect learning to economic opportunity in the place they call home. 

FutureMakers Coalition
Hendry County, Florida

The FutureMakers Coalition is a collective impact initiative working to help Southwest Floridians earn the high-quality credentials needed to enter the workforce. Launched in 2015, the coalition focuses on five counties and includes over 300 stakeholders and organizations from the private, public, and social sectors.

Through participation in this cohort, the coalition will work deeply in Hendry County - a rural, predominantly Hispanic county - to strengthen their systems capacity while improving learner-level outcomes.

Lawrence County Workforce Coalition
Lawrence County, Indiana

Lawrence County Economic Growth Council (LCEGC) is a nonprofit economic development organization in south central Indiana. As a full service LEDO, LCEGC provides a range of programs and services to improve the workforce system in their rural county. In 2018, LCEGC formed the Lawrence County Workforce Coalition through a three-year state-funded grant.  The Coalition includes 17 industry partners, 7 education/higher education institutions, 14 community organizations, and 11 public-sector agencies and offices.

Through participation in this cohort, this coalition seeks to strengthen their partnership with their robust set of committed stakeholders, and create sustainable collaborative systems that improve social mobility for their residents. 

22-counties of Northern California

Launching in 2018 as an initiative of Sacramento State University, ProjectAttain! mobilizes area leaders to take collective action to improve outcomes for working-age adults with some college experience, but no degree. Now, as a 501c3 organization, the partnership has rapidly expanded to serve a vast 22-county region that accounts for nearly 1/3 of California’s geography and only 9 percent of the state’s population. 

Through participation in this cohort, ProjectAttain! seeks to assess, actualize, and assure institutional readiness to help working age and under-served adult learners in rural communities return to school, complete their education, and become workforce ready. 

Founded in June 2020 to offset educational inequity caused by the confluence of lack of home internet access and disparate access to high-quality learning opportunities, the Taos Education Collaborative (TEC) is a cross-sector partnership focused on several communities in the Taos area.  A program of the Taos Community Foundation, TEC has implemented several program-and system-level supports to address challenges brought on by the pandemic. 

Through their participation in this cohort, TEC intends to build a unified approach among partners to reach their goals of digital empowerment, educational attainment, and economic prosperity for the residents of their region.

Upskill Coastal Bend Partnership
Brooks, Duval, & Jim Wells Counties, Texas

The Upskill Coastal Bend Partnership was formed in 2021 in response to challenges related to pandemic and concerns about the exceedingly high unemployment rates in rural areas of the Coastal Bend. This new partnership is convened by Education to Employment Partners, a  regional nonprofit partnership that serves as a direct-service provider, convener of education and business stakeholders, and regional champion for system change. 

Through participation in this cohort, they plan to focus on three rural, high-need counties that have been historically underserved by the higher education and workforce system.