Across the country, there is a critical shortage of qualified workers needed to fill middle-skill jobs—jobs that require more education and training than a high school diploma but less than a four-year college degree. Many of the middle-skill jobs in high-demand industries, like manufacturing, information technology and healthcare, pay family-sustaining wages and can be accessed by attaining postsecondary career and technical education (CTE) credentials.
While CTE programs in high-demand fields exist, the quality and outcomes of programs vary, research and awareness of best practices are limited, and leadership and professional development opportunities are uncommon.
In response to these challenges, ECMC Foundation launched the CTE Leadership Collaborative (LC) in 2018. The LC is an initiative focused on bringing together diverse perspectives and equipping CTE leaders with the tools, resources and skills needed to advance postsecondary CTE through fellowship programs.
Each LC grantee provides opportunities for the next generation of leaders from a range of disciplines and a variety of approaches—known as ECMC Foundation Fellows (Fellows)—dedicated to improving postsecondary CTE. LC grantees commit to similar branding and a common list of activities to create seamless opportunities for collaboration and ensure greater field building beyond the fellowship.
Through the LC, ECMC Foundation provides funding for fellowship programs that support professional development opportunities for the Fellows through mentorship, in-person and virtual convenings, and Fellow-led projects. The LC also convenes Fellows across programs on an annual basis, hosts receptions and networking events at conferences frequented by Fellows and offers grant opportunities for Fellows to collaborate on projects across programs and cohorts.
It is our belief that these Fellows will make lasting impacts at their respective institutions and share hundreds of publications, conference presentations and written pieces with the field.