E-Blast December 2020


E-Blast December 2020

As a subscriber, you will receive this E-Blast to your inbox every month. The goal of the E-Blast is to keep everyone in the NFN Regional Consortium up-to-date on news, events and other activities happening both in our region and the state. If you would like something placed into the E-blast and/or NFNRC Calendar, please send the information to (please submit by 5pm on the first Monday of the month to be included in that month’s newsletter).
Higher Ed Budgets for the Post-COVID Era


The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the global and U.S. economy more profoundly than any other event since World War II. Just as the subprime mortgage crisis ushered in an 18-month economic decline and an ensuing state budget crisis, the current economic slide threatens to leave us in an even larger fiscal hole. The Great Recession also taught the nation several lessons about higher education. Generally, the more education you have, the more likely you are to remain employed during economic hardship. States with higher educational attainment also see greater economic growth. Conversely, disproportionate cuts to higher education undermine statewide attainment goals. States will often pursue “across-the-board” cuts to institutions in what may appear to be a “fair” way to distribute losses, but this can cause significant harm.

Full Details

Announcing the New Community Engagement Subcommittee

We would like to announce our new Community Engagement Subcommittee that will begin in January 2021. Thank you to those who are joining the Community Engagement Subcommittee! This subcommittee will develop recommendations about how to create mechanisms for strong feedback loops with data users, support evidence-based decision making and analytical capacity, and ensure equitable access to actionable information.

View the meeting schedule here, and view the list of subcommittee members here.

Draft of the Cradle-to-Career Data System Legislative Report

On December 3, 2020, the first draft of the Cradle-to-Career Data System’s first legislative report will be available. Both of the advisory groups will be discussing the draft at their upcoming meetings in December (Policy & Analytics Advisory Group on December 8, 2020 and the Practice & Operations Advisory Group on December 10, 2020), and the Workgroup will discuss the final version at its December 16, 2020 meeting. The draft report can be accessed at both advisory group’s meeting materials links. If you would like to submit any public comments about the report, please visit our Public Comment page here. The report will be sent to the Legislature by December 31, 2020.

Sierra College Hosts Virtual Mentor Night for Entrepreneurs

As a regional innovation center, Sierra College nurtures entrepreneurship and is committed to support locally grown businesses and provide employment. Mentor Nights are offered through the Affiliate Mentor Program (AMP). This dream team of local experts mentor budding entrepreneurs with immediate feedback and access to resources after listening to student questions during the Mentor Night event. Business leaders believe that there is untapped potential at Sierra College and are stepping in to mentor the next generation of startups with honest advice and referral to resources at no charge to increase successful company launches in the region.

Submitted by Jeff Briggs, Regional Director, Employer Engagement, Advanced Manufacturient (North)
How California Community College Vocational programs have adapted to COVID-19

A lot of Career Technical Education programs require a great deal of hands-on experience. In a situation where in-person teaching is inherently dangerous, that’s required a lot of innovation on the part of educators.

Doubts About Going to College

More than one-third of prospective college students are reconsidering higher education in light of the coronavirus pandemic. Further, 43 percent of prospective students for one- and two-year programs are looking to delay enrollment, survey finds.

Building a Resilient Workforce

December 2, 2020

Through funding from the City of Sacramento, Valley Vision partnered with Burning Glass Technologies to analyze job postings in the six county region encompassing and surrounding Sacramento to determine transferable occupations for high layoff job categories.   The webinar was held on December 2, 2020 to review the data and skills needed to rapidly reskill our workforce to available, more resilient jobs.


Watch the video here


First Responders: Keeping Our Communities Healthy and Safe in a Pandemic


The Regional Director of Employer Engagement for Health in the North region collaborated with Valley vision to host the Regional EMT/Paramedic Advisory meeting was held on October 30, 2020.  Recognition in this incredibly brave and diligent workforce was a theme that was integrated as a vital thread in supporting these industry partners and students during COVID 19 with so many challenges in keeping the community safe and providing access to care for all communities.

Submitted by Julie Holt, Regional Director, Employer Engagement, Health (North)
Contract Education 2021 Tactics

     LERN’s Your 2021 Game Plan exclusive LERN member only report shared LERN’s perspective for your program and your community assuming the pandemic will continue throughout 2021.

We project the pandemic will still be here as well as the recession. You and your institution can-not wish away factors hurting income.

Contract Education 2021 Tactics focuses specifically on the pandemic and the recession’s impact on contract training and actions LERN believes you should be considering.


CCCAOE’s Spring 2021 Virtual Conference will bring learning to transform the model of career development around sustainable calls to action. The event is a vital component to the growth and development of career education and educators. Join in the energizing opportunity to hear from leaders and peers, who like you, show up every day in their roles as active leaders. Speakers include: Dr. Pedro Noguera, Dr. Robert Eyler, Dr. Adriene “Alex” Davis, and more. 

The Spring 2021 Virtual Conference goal is to foster inclusive conditions and sustainable action in the following areasStrong Workforce Program, Perkins, Regional Promising Practices, Industry Partnership Success Stories, Apprenticeship, Strong K12 pathways/dual enrollment models, Inclusive Practices targeting at-promise populations, and more – workshops will provide promising practices that support student success, high-quality professional learning opportunities, student engagement & retention, system practices, using data to build high-quality programs, and building better hiring practicesThese sessions are intended to nurture a sense of community between all students, innovation in diversity and inclusion for all students.

Full Conference: Price $495

Register Here

Informational Flyer

ASCCC Webinars – Strategies and Effective Practices for Conducting Labs and Activities Online

As the pandemic persists, Career Technical Education faculty have taken on a heavy lift of delivering quality career education to their students.  Laboratory modifications for online environments continue to be a challenge. This professional development webinar session will offer resources, expert advice, and a conversation to help us all better serve our students.

Please see the registration link below:

Register for Thursday, January 7, 2021, 3:30 – 5:00pm

Guided Pathways Communities of Practice

Guided Pathways work; this can look different at each college; for many colleges, we provide flex activity resources and facilitation, thought partnership via emails and phone/Zoom calls. We also have Communities of Practice and webinars (full and Rapid)!

Most recently, we went live with a Canvas site for “just in time” supports and resources. If you or anyone at your college is interested in gaining access to the Canvas site, please send us your Canvas email address and we would be happy to add you!

Credit for Prior Learning (CPL)

Reminder! Credit for Prior Learning Office Hours every other Friday from 11-12 ! Sunny and Kate Mahar from Shasta College will host “Office Hours” to create the space where we can work together, ask questions, and share best practices for CPL.  Many of you have had great questions/insights regarding other key aspects of implementation so we built the “Office Hours” topics around common priorities. Next discussion will focus on:  

December 18:  Marketing your CPL for students and action planning for 2021

Feel free to forward to your CPL teams. All meetings will use the same Zoom link below!

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 869 153 4232

Passcode: SCAILE

Center of Excellence

he North/Far North Center of Excellence has been tracking the regional labor market and is launching a condensed monthly newsletter with economic updates. Sign up here.

Unemployment—The unemployment rate declined from 14.3% in April to 8.9% in September in the Greater Sacramento (North) subregion and from 15.4% to 8.1% in the Far North. In Sacramento County, where retail, hospitality, and tourism jobs comprise a larger share of the labor market, the unemployment rate has been slower to improve. Two rural counties, Yuba and Sutter, have the highest unemployment rates in the region.

Labor Force—Data analysis indicates the rural Far North subregion, where the labor force contracted the most, could be more impacted over the long term.

 Industry Sectors—Government sector employment is still below pre-recession levels but has substantially recovered from the worst of its downward trajectory. Leisure and hospitality employment is at a historic low.

 Job postings—Job posting activity has been widely varied. Retail job postings showed a significant increase in both subregions. Construction activity has remained positive, but accommodations and food services activity remains low. Professional services in the Greater Sacramento (North) subregion has generally remained suppressed.

Read the full newsletter here.

Submitted by: Aaron Wilcher, Director, NFN Center of Excellence * 
NFNRC News Center
Women vs. Wildfires: On the Front Lines with the LTCC Fire Academy

Lake Tahoe Community College-July 2020


It’s an unfortunate fact of nature that some of the most beautiful places in the world are also the most vulnerable to disaster. As denizens of the nation’s wildfire capital, it’s a paradox that Northern Californians know all too well.

From the Redwoods of the Lost Coast to the Ponderosa Pines of Plumas, the north half of the state depends on the bravery and versatility of firefighters to keep its forests safe. And for graduates of first-responder CTE programs like Lake Tahoe Community College’s Fire Academy, that first trial by fire can happen pretty fast. 

Just one day after the Academy’s very first cohort graduated in 2007, the Angora fire broke out, quickly spreading to become the biggest wildfire the basin has ever seen. Among those heeding the call to protect the community was Jenny Alustiza, among the first female grads from LTCC’s Fire Academy. 

“She has saved lives,” says retiring LTCC instructor and Academy Coordinator Leona Allen. For the professor, who lost her home in the horrendous Angora fire, the pride in her courageous students is not just palpable, but personal.

“That’s the cool ripple effect about this program…  we know they’re out there being heroes.”


Today, Alustiza is a firefighter, paramedic, and the only woman at the Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District. Last year, out of hundreds of nominees, the Tahoe Daily Tribune named her “Most Remarkable Woman” in the first responder division.


Innovation in the Making:

 Sector Feature-June 2020


North Far North Collaboration Takes Aim at Advanced Manufacturing Skills Gap

American manufacturers contribute more than $2.4 trillion to the United States economy. Yet, over the next decade, there will be a shortage of 2 million skilled workers to fill industry demand, according to The National Institute of Standards and Technology. 

That discrepancy is why in Northern California, from the Oregon border down to the Sacramento Valley, community colleges are partnering with high schools and industry leaders to forge economic vitality in this critical sector.

Even amid a global health crisis, Advanced Manufacturing remains essential, according to Far North Advanced Manufacturing Regional Director John Schmidt. From companies like Southern Aluminum Finishing in Redding, which “hasn’t missed a beat” in supplying companies like Tesla, to the myriad CNC shops dotting the area, “There have been little to no layoffs in the region of any sizable manufacturer.”

The sector’s secret to remaining robust, according to Schmidt, is collaboration. And nowhere has that synergy been more apparent than in the wake of COVID-19.