Governor Tom Wolf presented his fourth annual budget proposal in Harrisburg before both chambers of the General Assembly. During the speech, Gov. Wolf recognized a special guest who epitomizes the role a community college education has in creating a path to prosperity. Michael Rosenberger rose from a janitor at LCR Embedded Systems, Inc. to a high-level advanced manufacturing position through a training program at
Montgomery County Community College. Michael earned skills that helped him advance to the company's head of the machine shop; LCR builds equipment for the military and the aerospace industry. The governor noted how citizens like Michael contribute to the community and build a better future for the Commonwealth.
Read the Pennsylvania Commission for Community Colleges response to the 2018-19 budget proposal.
In his budget remarks to the General Assembly, Gov. Wolf explained the need to create a more skilled workforce to support the Commonwealth's high-demand technology and industrial manufacturing sectors. Pennsylvania's community colleges-the largest sector of postsecondary education and workforce development in the Commonwealth-did not receive an increase in operating funds in the proposed budget. Several lawmakers noted the inconsistency and appealed for properly investing in community colleges.
Senator John Yudichak, member of the community college caucus, and longtime supporter of Pennsylvania's community colleges highlighted the efforts of
Luzerne County Community College
and Lehigh Carbon Community College in preparing Pennsylvanians for twenty-first century occupations. PA community colleges provide transfer opportunities to bachelor degrees and certificates and associate degrees in career and technical education, all required to meet the workforce demands and advance the Commonwealth.
State Rep. Tarah Toohil, commended the Governor for recognizing the importance of education from early learning to higher education but expressed concern that community colleges were not recommended for any additional operating funding. As Representative Toohil noted, community colleges play an important role in the Commonwealth's education and workforce development pipeline, providing thousands of Pennsylvanians the opportunity to earn a credential that leads them to careers with family sustaining wages throughout the Commonwealth.
Mayor Kenney unveiled a citywide workforce development strategy between the City of Philadelphia and its partners to align skills development and training to meet employers' workforce needs. The plan,
Fueling Philadelphiaâ€™s Talent Engine,
is a collaboration among multiple stakeholders such as the
Community College of Philadelphia
and Philadelphia Works to reduce the skills gap. Companies such as Computer Components Corp., an electronic manufacturer are desperately looking for middle-skill workers needed to help the business expand.
addresses seven sectors and seeks to create an Office of Workforce Development to better connect jobseekers to employment opportunities.
The College in High School program provides high school students the opportunity to earn 30 college-credit courses towards the General Education Certificate with the
Community College of Allegheny County. Students in the program attend at a reduced cost, making their path to college and career readiness more affordable. Students who qualify to transfer through the Pennsylvania Transfer and Articulation consortium can potentially enter higher education as junior, if they complete one of ten identified associate degrees.