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Planning for Higher Education Journal

The Power of “Systemness”

A Collaborative Approach Aids Workers in New York State
Journal Cover

The community colleges in the State University of New York system leveraged “systemness”—the idea that working together can greatly enhance the possibility of positive results—in creating a statewide program to retrain dislocated TAA-eligible workers and returning veterans for high-quality, high-paying jobs in the skilled manufacturing sector. By aligning with the strengths of each college, curricula in areas such as photonics, optics, advanced manufacturing and machining, and semiconductors and mechatronics were created, leading to a diploma or certification and thus to increased probability of hiring. Regional employers and government workforce agencies were also part of the leadership teams, helping to create programming that was specifically focused on the needs of these vital industries.

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