A local leader from Clover Park Technical College (CPTC), Mabel Edmonds, recently delivered a presentation on helping baby boomers improve their job skills, at the 91st annual convention of the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) in New Orleans.
Attended by nearly 2,000 community college leaders from across the nation, the convention offered practical tips and support for colleges coping with soaring enrollments. Among the surge of new students is an influx of baby boomers age 50 and up who are seeking to enhance their job prospects, raise their earning potential and improve their workplace skills.
In the workshop, “Plus 50 and Completion” convention attendees learned about the new Plus 50 Completion Strategy that is expanding workforce training for baby boomers. The initiative is focused on helping students complete degrees, certificates and not-for-credit credentials in high growth fields and high demand jobs.
As the dean of workforce development at CPTC, Edmonds spoke about the real-life lessons the college has learned while helping hundreds of baby boomers re-energize their futures. Rosemary Dillon, dean of health sciences, social science and human services at Cape Cod Community College located in West Barnstable, Mass., also spoke about the nuts and bolts of helping plus 50 adults chart a new direction in life.
CPTC has long been a leader in offering programming for plus 50 students and serves as a mentor college within AACC’s Plus 50 Initiative to other colleges seeking to work with this growing non-traditionally aged student population, noted Mary Sue Vickers, director of the Plus 50 Initiative at AACC.
CPTC is a founding college within the Plus 50 Initiative, a grant-funded demonstration effort begun in 2007 and operated through the AACC. The project offers tools to help colleges meet the needs of students age 50 and up, who have been coming to community colleges in increasing numbers during the economic downturn.
“Many baby boomers are updating their job skills and completing their educations at community colleges,” said Vickers. “Increasingly, colleges are tailoring their programs to suit plus 50 adult needs. Many baby boomers plan to stay in the workforce and need new skills to enhance their opportunities for success.”
About the Plus 50 Initiative
The Plus 50 Initiative began its efforts in 2007 to help community colleges faced with an expanding baby boomer student population by focusing on learning, training and career development, and volunteering. The three-year project is sponsored by the AACC with a grant from The Atlantic Philanthropies. With an additional grant from Lumina Foundation for Education, the initiative will continue its work through 2014 and focus on
increasing the number of plus 50 students completing credentials and degrees. To learn more visit plus50.aacc.nche.edu.
About the American Association of Community Colleges
Headquartered in Washington, D.C., the American Association of Community Colleges is the leading advocacy organization representing close to 1,200 community, junior and technical colleges nationwide. Community colleges are the largest sector of higher education, enrolling 12.4 million credit and non-credit students each year. To learn more about the AACC, visit www.aacc.nche.edu.
About Clover Park Technical College:
Clover Park Technical College offers more than 50 career training degree and certificate programs in the areas of business, computer information and technology, allied health, manufacturing, construction and trades, multimedia design, and personal care services. The college also offers certification, online and distance learning, as well as continuing education courses.
For more information call 253-589-5800, text TECH4U to 41513 or visit www.cptc.edu