OVERVIEW OF CAREER AND WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT
SBCC is a national leader in placing low-income adults and at-risk youth in high wage, high-growth employment through an innovative career pathway model that aligns industry need, the community college system, and community based organizations. SBCC has a long track record of successfully placing low income adults and at risk youth in subsidized and un-subsidized private sector employment as demonstrated by its welfare to work contracts, career pathway programming, and subsidized employment activities.
In 1997, SBCC launched a Welfare-to-Work project with Tosco (now ConocoPhillips) 76 refinery in the South Bay of Los Angeles. The refinery project was a partnership between SBCC, Department of Social Services (DPSS), Tosco, Los Angeles Harbor College and the then Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers Union (OCAW), now United Steel Workers Local 675. The goal of this project was to place TANF recipients into subsidized work experience leading to high wage jobs in local refineries. SBCC managed the contract and coordinated all of the service components including providing case managers that interfaced between DPSS, the refinery, Harbor College, and SBCC's family support partners. Over 50% of the program participants were ultimately hired by the refinery as process operators at $25/hour plus benefits.
In 2005, SBCC launched the Energy Pathway Program (EPP) to train low-income individuals for high wage jobs in the oil refining industry. Working with its established energy partnership, SBCC conducted an extensive planning and development process beginning with a survey of industry employment needs at each partner refinery. Based on these findings, SBCC worked with industry to develop a customized workforce development strategy that would meet industry needs for new employees while creating new opportunities for neighborhood residents. The partnership received a 2005 Governor's 15% discretionary grant to fund pilot training for two process operator classes. Following are a few statistics from the Energy Pathway Program:
First cohort graduated in 2006
- 100% of participants were low income
- 95% job placement rate
- Average annual income of participants increased over 200%
- EPP continues to place 30-40 individuals per year as process operators and has expanded to train and place individuals into jobs as instrument technicians, welders, maintenance and turn around workers.
- EPP currently trains and places over 200 individuals/year with an 80% retention rate and 85% job placement rate
In 2007, SBCC started its Urban Teacher Fellowship (UTF)-a career pathway supporting low income community residents to attain their high school diploma or GED (if needed), Associate's degree, Bachelor's degree, and teaching credential in about four years. UTF's original cohort of students have graduated from LA Harbor College and are now full-time students at CSU Dominguez Hills. Currently, there are cohorts of students at LA Harbor College and LA City College with several more community colleges and CSU's coming on board in 2010. The Urban Teacher Fellowship is also being replicated around the state with support from the David & Lucile Packard Foundation.
Building off the successes of EPP and UTF, SBCC is working on pathways into multiple growth sectors. To date, SBCC has pathways in operation, or in development, leading to employment in the education, utilities, digital and media arts, video game, and green technology sectors. All of SBCC's pathways are directed by employer collaboratives representing over 50 major employers including large multi-national companies such as Exxon Mobil, Conoco Phillips, and BP.
SBCC is also now running several subsidized employment programs for both youth and adults. During the summer of 2009, SBCC placed over 200 young people into summer youth employment, predominantly in afterschool programs and summer camps, in collaboration with LA Southwest College and LA City College.
Additionally, SBCC is a service provider for the South Bay Workforce Investment Board's Transitional Subsidized Employment (TSE). For TSE, SBCC will place 250+ people into subsidized work experiences for up to one year. Participants are CalWORKS recipients and they will be placed in work sites at afterschool programs, charter schools, and community-based organizations.