The Colleges We Need to Create the Cities We Want

Community colleges (CCs) sit at the nexus of some of the most powerful forces reshaping our lives. The very best of such schools are positioning themselves as vital contributors to the retooling underway in their cities. CCs will change the ways that the next generation of leaders, makers, citizens get trained for their future roles. A place-based approach to learning requires that entrepreneurs connect with their communities. But changing how CCs link with neighbors, neighborhoods and businesses is easier said than done. As creatives move from holding jobs towards holding ‘work’, CCs must invest in whatever makes it easier for students to create their work portfolios. Education and work training have been separated from one another. Now, the best skilled-worker has formal training and succeeds when they have already applied it before entering the workforce. The new economy means what for training? How do we prepare someone for active participation in this new emerging economy?

  • Van Ton-Quinlivan, Vice Chancellor, California Community College’s Chancellor’s Office

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