New State Budget Puts More Ohioans On The Path To Rewarding Careers
Terra State Praises Budget’s Focus on Workforce Training
OACC Staff - Columbus, OH
Leaders at Ohio’s community colleges are praising Governor Mike DeWine and members of the General Assembly for their leadership in passing the new state budget, which they say has strengthened workforce development programs in the state to better prepare Ohioans for careers in the fast-changing workplace.
“Ohio is stronger today thanks to this budget,” said Jack Hershey, president and CEO of the Ohio Association of Community Colleges. “By increasing investments in community colleges, while also providing more opportunities for Ohioans who may not want to seek a college degree to earn an industry-recognized credential or short-term certificate, this budget puts us a better position to put more Ohioans on the path to rewarding new careers.”
Among important measures adopted in the new state budget is a 3% increase in Ohio’s performance-based funding formula for higher education, an incentive for colleges and universities that rewards student success and program completion. Since that formula was put in place in 2014, Ohio community colleges have achieved an 8.5% increase in the number of degrees and one-year certificates awarded, along with a 22% increase in short-term certificate awards. The new two-year budget appropriates $30 million to provide microcredentials or short-term training to current and prospective workers.
“Terra State Community College is very excited with what the governor and lieutenant governor have provided for our students across the state of Ohio,” said Dr. Ronald Schumacher, President of Terra State Community College. “At Terra State, we will be building new programs including certificates and other credentialing initiatives. We are so thankful to the governor and his team!”
Dr. Cory Stine, executive director of the Terra College Foundation echoed President Schumacher’s praise saying “The DeWine-Husted administration’s leadership on building Ohio’s workforce capacity will help individuals to grow their knowledge and skills, which will enable employers to fill crucial job openings. The Administration’s support of these efforts reinforce that Ohio is a national leader.”
“Workforce Development is so important to build relationships with area businesses to expand and provide that connection for students to thrive in their future career paths,” added Erin Cremean, interim director of workforce success at Terra State. “The Kern Center at Terra State Community College provides workforce development and community education to build those opportunities. We are very thankful for the funding to expand those innovative opportunities and growth.”
To complement the DeWine Administration’s increasing focus on workforce training, Ohio community colleges recently created the Ohio Workforce League, a statewide team focused on strengthening career-readiness training efforts and staying ahead of emerging job trends. The Ohio Workforce League will also help ensure that community colleges are doing all they can to help the state meet its ambitious attainment goals that call for 65 percent of residents ages 25-64 to have a degree, license or certificate by 2025.
The OACC, representing the presidents and trustees of Ohio’s 23 public two-year institutions, works to advance our community colleges through policy advocacy and professional development. For more information, please visit www.OhioCommunityColleges.org.