Community College Workforce Partnerships Receive $23 Million in State Grants


CCCS and Eight Member Colleges Will Provide Education and Training Support

April 18, 2024 (Denver, CO) – The Colorado Community College System (CCCS) will partner on critical workforce development projects that received more than $23 million through the state’s competitive Opportunity Now program.

Created two years ago by House Bill 22-1350, Opportunity Now seeks innovative solutions to meet Colorado’s workforce needs through industry and education collaboration. The CCCS System Office and eight member colleges will provide training and education support for 14 of 43 projects selected for the second round of funding.

“As the partner of choice for Colorado, CCCS is thrilled to be part of so many transformative workforce development initiatives,” said Michael Macklin, CCCS’s Associate Vice Chancellor for Workforce Partnerships & Development. “From designing curriculum to delivering instruction, our colleges will foster diverse, skilled talent for key industries across our state.”

Many projects will create streamlined pathways to in-demand jobs. The CCCS System Office will work with the Associated General Contractors of Colorado and Colorado Succeeds to link construction apprenticeship programs to associate and bachelor’s degree programs. To support Colorado’s growing aerospace industry, Red Rocks Community College will partner with CoorsTek, Inc. and the Education Design Lab to create four micro-pathways that scaffold into an associate of applied science degree.

“As a longtime strategic partner, we are excited about the Colorado Aerospace Career Pathways & Talent Pipelines coalition that will focus on historically excluded populations in aerospace and manufacturing, enhance workforce equity, and contribute to Colorado’s educational goals,” said Bill Hughes, President and CEO of Education Design Lab. “The Lab will work closely with our education, workforce, and industry partners to resolve the workforce shortages and skills gaps faced by Colorado’s aerospace industry.”

Several CCCS colleges will help bolster Colorado’s rural workforce. Building on a successful model in Fremont, Trinidad State College (TSC) is collaborating with Emergent Campus to bring an incubator and training hub to Trinidad. The project will provide students with hands-on learning experiences and leverage existing partnerships with Pueblo Community College (PCC) to extend educational and economic impact throughout the region.

“This is more than just a funding boost; it’s a catalyst for change in our community,” said TSC president Dr. Rhonda Epper. “The Emergent Campus project will open doors for our youth and bring new life to our local economy.”

CCCS and its member colleges are partnering on the following projects:

Grantee Amount CCCS/College Partner(s) and Roles
CoorsTek, Inc. $4,580,000 Red Rocks Community College will partner on aerospace programming.
Associated General Contractors of Colorado $2,873,884 CCCS will support designing a stackable construction pathway from a high school pre-apprenticeship through a Bachelor of Applied Science degree.
Innosphere $1,358,278 CCCS will advise on quantum and clean technology workforce training.
Emergent Campus, LLC $3,509,477 Trinidad State College will partner on innovation hub; Pueblo Community College will partner on cybersecurity training.
Denver Economic Development & Opportunity $1,538,593 Red Rocks Community College will partner on non-credit training in installation, maintenance, and repair for EV charging stations.
Community College of Denver $1,365,812 The funds will support launching a Practical Nursing to Bachelor’s of Nursing bridge program.
Southwest Colorado Mental Health Center, Inc. Dba Axis Health System $1,289,584 Pueblo Community College will partner on mental and behavioral health training programs and a medical assisting apprenticeship program in Durango.
CCCS $1,219,365 Red Rocks Community College will serve as a strategic partner in developing workforce training programs in quantum technology and aerospace.
Microchip Technology $1,056,792 Pikes Peak State College will support courses and training for Microchip, Entegris, and InnovaFlex.
Banner Health of Colorado $809,716 Front Range Community College will support high school interns in applying and enrolling in higher education courses.
Joint Initiatives for Youth and Families $622,624 Pikes Peak State College will support recruitment, retention, and credentialing of early childhood educators.
Colorado State University $49,812 Lamar Community College will encourage undergraduate students to continue nursing education and return to serve rural communities.
Medecipher, Inc. $49,777 Pueblo Community College will partner on health information curriculum modules and establish industry partnerships.
Yampa Valley Partnership for Students, Stewardship, & Sustainability $2,912,774 Colorado Northwestern Community College will support the expansion of career and technical education in natural resources, construction, and healthcare fields.



About CCCS

The Colorado Community College System (CCCS) is the state’s largest system of higher education and workforce development, delivering thousands of programs to over 125,000 students annually through 13 colleges and 35 locations across Colorado. The System’s open-access mission ensures all Coloradans who aspire to enrich their lives have access to high quality, affordable higher education opportunities. The System Office provides leadership, advocacy, and support to the colleges under the direction of the State Board for Community Colleges and Occupational Education (SBCCOE). Join us in changing the way Colorado goes to college

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