Home > Blog

The Penn Foster Blog

Where Talent Meets Career Opportunity

For the second year in a row, Penn Foster is excited to be returning to the National School Boards Association (NSBA) Annual Conference this weekend! Hosted in Boston, MA the conference brings together more than 7,000 school board members, superintendents, and education leaders from across the country to share new ideas and best practices on technology, leadership and supporting student achievement in the education.
Penn Foster Logo
The youth organizations of today are helping to develop the workers, parents and leaders of tomorrow. And one of the best ways youth organizations can prepare our nation's young people for a successful future is by partnering with local colleges and businesses to sponsor a joint college and career fair. This is a wonderful opportunity to get the youth you serve in front of employers and acquaint them with some options for post-secondary education. When organizing such an event, keep these four best practices in mind:
Employers across a wide variety of industries report not having enough qualified candidates to fill their open positions. This talent shortage is expected to grow in the coming years, especially in fields that don't require a four-year degree. In fact, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects the number of jobs requiring associate's degrees will grow 17.6 percent during the decade between 2012 and 2022.1 As the demand for workers with associate's degrees, career diplomas and career certificates grows - particularly in healthcare, technology and the skilled trades - employers will find a growing pool of career college graduates on the job market. Here are three great reasons to hire them.
Last week, I was given the opportunity to travel to Atlanta, GA for the first time for the celebration of three very special women " Sherray Harley, Joann Jaso, and Brittani Seymour " and their recent graduation from high school with the Church's Chicken Stride for Success program. Hosted at the Church's Chicken headquarters, these ladies were recognized for their accomplishments and dedication to the company by the entire corporate office and executive team, including CEO Jim Hyatt, Chief People Officer Ed Brett, and COO Ed Williams.
I recently attended the National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB) Forum. It was four valuable days focused on addressing the needs of businesses, career seekers, workforce boards, and local economies.  Due to Penn Foster's sponsorship of the event I was able to attend a variety of sessions and had the opportunity to meet with several Workforce Investment Boards and NAWB board members. Everyone I met was committed to sharing their challenges, tools, and strategies so they could learn from one another's ideas. With so many diverse topics covered I realized it could be challenging for workforce boards to decide where to focus. Therefore, after listening and participating in these discussion, I identified the three key areas I believe will have the biggest impact on outcomes for WIBs.  
On Friday, March 11th I had the pleasure of being the keynote speaker for the 2016 Graduating class of Pima Medical Institute " Albuquerque. The Kiva Auditorium in downtown Albuquerque was brimming full and the excitement was palpable. Graduation is always a special time and this ceremony marked a milestone for four special graduates, out of the hundreds in attendance. This was the first graduating class of Penn Foster High School Students in partnership with Pima Medical Institute. The graduation speech I prepared turned out to be particularly fitting as it highlighted the power of gratitude and fortitude, which these four graduates exemplify.
Penn Foster Logo
A large piece of the gainful employment compliance puzzle is ensuring career colleges are doing everything they can to help students get jobs with local businesses after graduation. Sometimes though, local businesses aren't aware that the career college in their own community prepares students with the exact skills their company is recruiting for. Make local businesses aware of the pool of skilled and qualified job candidates your school is producing with the following tips.
In industries with traditionally high turnover rates, such as quick-service restaurants and retail, it is exceptionally important for companies to prioritize their employee development initiatives and to guide employees towards management and growth tracks. Companies that make employee development an inherent part of their brand message to their employees often reap the benefits of reduced turnover and increased employee motivation. After all, giving employees the opportunity to improve their skills and move up in the company increases both their confidence and loyalty. This increased focus on developing and promoting employee training programs is rapidly becoming a standard in many industries; in fact, according to a 2014 Restaurant Briefing report, 69 percent of QSRs planned to devote more resources to training that year.1 It's vital that companies make these retention programs a major part of their HR strategy, effectively communicate the benefits of these program, and make it easy for employees to access them.
Penn Foster Logo
There's no one defining aspect of a career college that determines student success. Quality academics, flexible programs, a supportive learning environment and ample resources all help pave a path toward student achievement. And now, it's even more apparent how a strong sense of community can affect students. In fact, school spirit has been linked to higher academic performance and greater general happiness. But how do you generate school spirit without sports teams and events to rally spirit organically?
Last week, Penn Foster traveled to Arlington, VA to attend the 2016 National Job Corps Association (NJCA) Policy Forum. Having taken part in previous events including the 2015 NJCA Leadership Summit and the Job Corps 50th Anniversary celebration, we were honored to have another opportunity to meet with Job Corps center operators, advocates, community leaders, and policymakers to discuss the critical issues facing Job Corps today. Penn Foster CEO Frank Britt had the privilege of speaking at the opening session of the event.

Search Our Blog Posts

Get the latest on skills, talent, and economic opportunity

Connect With Penn Foster

Human Resources Today