New $127,426 grant boosts CTE, business connections
to support underserved youth

Treasure Valley Community College’s efforts to expand its Career and Technical Education outreach just received a huge boost with a grant of $127,426 from Meyer Memorial Trust. The grant provides funding for a key position to create collaboration between industry partners to build education-to-workforce pathways for historically underserved youth in the region. 

TVCC has already received more than $5.83 million to expand its CTE facilities, but this grant specifically targets personnel costs needed to connect CTE programs and TVCC students with local businesses.  The grant will provide start-up funds to hire an Education to Work Coordinator who will establish communication with current industry partners, identify their training needs, develop internships and work experience opportunities for students, and create new industry and business partners.

Eastern Oregon labor statistics reported 900 job vacancies in 2016 and a lack of qualified applicants to fill them.  As job growth has ramped up in the state so has the number of job vacancies.  A large share of difficult-to-fill job openings require work experience which further reduces the applicant pool in a tight labor market. 

“The goal of our project is to provide the education/training and work experience for youth and the under-employed to fill these jobs,” said TVCC President Dana Young.  “We believe economic growth in Malheur County and the region will be achieved through quality education, better use of available resources and coordination of the efforts of businesses, schools and government.  TVCC is committed to supporting and creating collaborative solutions to address the region’s great needs, challenges and opportunities.”

TVCC Foundation Executive Director Cathy Yasuda cites this funding as critical to developing TVCC’s CTE programs.

“TVCC’s Career Technical Education Program partners with area industry to prepare our under-served and under-represented students for direct entry into employment as well as to ‘skill-up’ incumbent workers, but until now there’s been a missing link,” Yasuda said. “Due to limited staff and dollars, we have not been able to fund this kind of targeted positon previously. Now we are able to provide that critical direct connection between our employers and the college,” Yasuda said.

Eddie Alves, Vice President of Academic Affairs, agrees the grant will provide a big boost to TVCC’s CTE Program.  "This gives TVCC the opportunity to improve our Career and Technical education programs and get better alignment with the skills needed in these high-wage, high-skill industries."

Meyer Memorial Trust was founded by the late Fred G. Meyer, who built the chain of retail stores bearing his name throughout the Pacific Northwest. In 1978 his will established the Trust. The Meyer Memorial Trust is a private, independent foundation representing Meyer's personal philanthropy. The Trust makes grants to qualified tax-exempt applicants in Oregon and Clark County, Washington.

The job announcement for this new position is being finalized and recruiting will start next month. For more information about jobs at TVCC see the College’s website at www.tvcc.cc