Chamber's education attainment initiatives get financial boost

Posted by Jeremy Elwood on Aug 03, 2016

The Chamber continues growing its efforts in workforce development, and national organizations are recognizing our efforts.

Chamber officials learned on July 18 that ours was one of six organizations in the country to receive the 2016-17 ACCE Award for Education Attainment, given out by the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives (ACCE). Each of the six selected organizations, chosen from a pool of 27 applicants, will receive a one-time $40,000 award to boost programs that help communities increase their number of people with college degrees or skill certificates.

The Chamber plans to put this additional funding toward two programs:

  • The Greater Ozarks Centers for Advanced Professional Studies (GO CAPS), a career exploration program which connects students and teachers with business leaders in real world settings
  • The Springfield Higher Education 2025 Project, which aims to improve postsecondary credential attainment to 60 percent by 2025

“We’re thrilled to receive this recognition for our education attainment efforts,” said Lindsay Haymes, the Chamber’s vice president of workforce development and GO CAPS executive director. “Chamber members continually tell us that finding qualified and motivated employees is a key challenge, and that challenge will only become greater in the future. This funding will help our efforts to address this important issue in our region.”

ACCE’s Education Attainment Division launched its competitive awards program in 2014 to recognize chambers that have put a priority on education attainment issues and established programs toward those goals. In addition to funding, the six winning chambers receive technical and planning assistance and access to a network of national thought leaders who can provide guidance as education programs grow.

The award was made possible by support from the Lumina Foundation and The Kresge Foundation.

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