Building Partnerships to Promote Job Skills Development

Today, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan helped unveil a new public-private partnership between Discovery Communications and Montgomery College aimed at equipping students with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in today’s workforce. 

The partnership, created in response to President Obama’s Skills for America’s Future initiative announced last October, will feature internships, guest lecturers, resume development, and other programs designed to teach students the marketable job skills sought by employers today.

As part of his American Graduation Initiative, the President set a goal of having an additional 5 million community college graduates by 2020, including students who earn certificates and associate degrees or who continue on to graduate from four-year colleges and universities.  Public-private partnerships like the one announced today will play a key role in this effort.

And this new effort is part of Discovery’s Discover Your Skills, a larger skills-focused initiative announced by Discovery and Dirty Jobs architect and host Mike Rowe in May.  Discover Your Skills includes an online resource—developed in collaboration with Skills for America’s Future, the Department of Education, and the Department of Labor—to provide unemployed and underemployed Americans with access to resources for obtaining marketable job skills and expertise and to raise awareness of career opportunities.

In addition to the partnership, Discovery announced a series of eight public service announcements that will start airing August 29 aimed at highlighting career opportunities in the skilled trades and the importance of training workers to fill critical jobs in manufacturing, health care, energy, technology, construction and other industries.  These and other materials can be viewed here

Thank you to Discovery and Montgomery College and to the many other partners who have heeded the President’s call to action for ensuring America’s students are prepared for the global economy that awaits them.

Kumar Garg is a Senior Advisor to the Deputy Director for Policy at OSTP

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