Contact: Cherie Yurco; email@example.com
For immediate release — March 22, 2021
(DALLAS) — Dallas College has joined nearly 40 institutions to launch the Taskforce on Higher Education and Opportunity. These partners are driven to act by the challenges caused by the pandemic, income inequality, the changing nature of work and levels of unemployment among recent college graduates — nearly double the levels seen in the 2008 recession. The impact of this crisis is falling unevenly across groups and disproportionately impacting students from disadvantaged communities, despite their educational background. The taskforce will provide greater opportunity to students and communities, while reimagining higher education's contribution to society and sharing insights with the broader education community.
Through the taskforce, Dr. Joe May, Dallas College chancellor, will work with leaders from public, private, two-year and four-year institutions that represent 2.5 million students nationwide. Together they are focused on three key goals: ensuring student success despite the worst recession since World War II, partnering with local communities and reimagining how higher education is delivered.
“This taskforce allows Dallas College to work with partner institutions to create resources and pathways to success for our students while building a workforce that meets the needs of our recovering local and national economies,” said Dr. May. “By connecting students to careers, we can make an impact on their lives that will last for generations to come.”
Schools will take individual and collective action to meet the shared mission of the taskforce through new goals set every six months. Member institutions are now launching the first round of initiatives to prepare 2021-2023 graduates for success in the post-pandemic economy. In the coming months, Dallas College will develop programs to support local communities, and additional programs will follow to reimagine the future of higher education and prepare students for work in a post-pandemic world.
Through the taskforce, Dallas College is launching a Virtual Career Fair Initiative using blockchain technology to help connect employers with students seeking career-connected learning opportunities, such as internships and apprenticeships, as well as part-time and full-time employment.
“Connecting students with employers in large urban areas like Dallas is always a challenge,” said Dr. Pyeper Wilkins, vice chancellor of workforce and advancement. “Doing so during a pandemic when so many businesses are operating virtually and so many students are engaged in online learning is nearly impossible. Our involvement in the taskforce and the work with our peers will not only help students in Dallas, but whole economies across the nation.”
For additional information on how Dallas College helps students get connected with employers, and helps employers hire qualified candidates, please visit Dallas College’s Workforce Training resources.
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About the Taskforce on Higher Education and Opportunity:
Taskforce membership will continue to grow in order to diversify and scale impact with a focus on action — uniquely positioning the taskforce in the higher education space.
Learn more about the taskforce and member institutions' initiatives.
Taskforce members include:
- Mark Becker, president, Georgia State University
- Gene D. Block, chancellor, UCLA
- Seth Bodnar, president, University of Montana
- Bob Brown, president, Boston University*
- Ángel Cabrera, president, Georgia Institute of Technology
- Mary Schmidt Campbell, president, Spelman College*
- Michael Crow, president, Arizona State University
- Carol Folt, president, University of Southern California*
- Joan Gabel, president, University of Minnesota
- Patrick Gallagher, chancellor, University of Pittsburgh
- Kevin Guskiewicz, chancellor, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- Andrew David Hamilton, president, New York University
- Anne Kress, president, Northern Virginia Community College*
- Paul LeBlanc, president, Southern New Hampshire University
- Linda Livingstone, president, Baylor University
- Sarah Mangelsdorf, president, University of Rochester
- Andrew Martin, chancellor, Washington University in St. Louis
- Harold Martin, chancellor, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
- Gary May, chancellor, University of California, Davis
- Joe May, chancellor, Dallas College
- James Milliken, chancellor, University of Texas System*
- Mark Mitsui, president, Portland Community College
- Darryll Pines, president, University of Maryland
- Vincent Price, president, Duke University
- Scott Pulsipher, president, Western Governors University*
- Scott Ralls, president, Wake Technical Community College
- Robert C. Robbins, president, University of Arizona*
- Félix V. Matos Rodríguez, chancellor, City University of New York*
- Timothy Sands, president, Virginia Tech
- Michael Schill, president, University of Oregon
- Kate Smith, president, Rio Salado College
- Samuel Stanley, president, Michigan State University
- Astrid S. Tuminez, president, Utah Valley University
- Gregory Washington, president, George Mason University
- Ruth Watkins, president, University of Utah
- Federico Zaragoza, president, College of Southern Nevada
- Bill Hansen, CEO and president, Strada Education Network
- André Dua, senior partner, McKinsey & Company*
* indicates Taskforce Executive Committee member and/or Goal 1 initiative lead.