E-Blast May 2021


E-Blast May 2021

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).
Cross-Sector Regional Industry Advisory Meeting Gerontology, Geriatrics and Business Services in the Field of Aging


On April 22, 2021, the North Far North Regional Director’s for Employer Engagement, Julie Holt and Angela Cordell, partnered with the Center of Excellence’s Ebony Benzing  and Valley Vision to host an industry advisory on Gerontology, Geriatrics and Business Services in the Field of Aging. The advisory was attended by more than 40 participants.

Jeannee Parker Martin, President and CEO, of Leading Age California presented valuable information on the California Master Plan for Ageing with five overarching goals regarding services, housing, decreasing isolation, workforce development, and equity gaps. Martin shared the core values and mission for Leading Age that includes policy, equity advocacy, workforce development and aging services for California’s mature adults to assist the expanding population of over 5.6 million over 65 years of age.

Submitted By:

Julie Holt, Regional Director, Employer Engagement-Health (North)

Angela Cordell, Regional Director Employer Engagement-Business (North/Far North)

The Hechinger Report

Poll: Nearly half of parents don’t want their kids to go straight to a four-year college

A Gallup survey, commissioned by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, a philanthropic foundation, and released April 7, 2021, found that 46 percent of parents said they would prefer not to send their children to a four-year college after high school, even if there were no obstacles, financial or otherwise. Only a slim majority of parents — 54 percent — still prefer a four-year college for their children. (The Carnegie Corporation is among the funders of The Hechinger Report.)

New student ambassador program in South Lake Tahoe

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — A new student ambassador program in South Lake Tahoe will help keep the city clean and safe during the tourist season and also give students paid, work experience.

The Lake Tahoe Student Ambassador Program is a partnership between the city of South Lake Tahoe, Lake Tahoe Unified School District, Lake Tahoe Community College and Sierra Nevada Alliance.

“In the past year we’ve seen this increase in visitors, and there’s been a lot of complaints and concerns that there are certain areas where there’s just too many visitors to manage,” said Kim Carr, LTUSD. “And so we’re really needing more eyes and more people present so that we can remind people and help people appreciate the natural beauty of Tahoe but also help them understand what it is to be a good steward.”

Submitted by Kim Carr, K12 Pathway Coordinator,
NorCal Cyber Mayors Cup 2021 Brings Students, Educators and Community Together

The North Far North Regional Consortia is so proud to see the results from our NorCal Cyber Mayors’ Cup Competition this spring!  Over 200 Community College, High School, and Middle School students participated in the April 17th competition.  During the month leading up to the event we held weekly cybersecurity webinars featuring hands-on cyber activities and keynotes from prestigious industry partners and government officials in which students, parents, faculty, and community members participated.

This yearly event is not only a wonderful way for our students to participate in competition and team-based learning, but it connects them to career opportunities and industry partners as well. Involving City and County government officials like the local Mayors really adds to increasing awareness for all-critical cybersecurity skills and occupations.

The regional partnerships we have developed between the NFN Regional Consortia ICT-DM Regional Directors (Wendy Porter & Cornelius Brown), Sacramento County Office of Education, the ICT-Hub, CS4NorCal, K12 and Community Colleges have streamlined our ability to bring these amazing opportunities to our North Far North students and faculty.  The strength in these partnerships is extremely encouraging for improving tech education and workforce development for Northern CA’s future.

NorCal Cyber Mayors’ Cup is a wonderful way to excite students about careers in cybersecurity and to participate in more of our yearly events, strengthening their skills and their knowledge on following a productive education pathway to the tech workforce.

Please read more about the results of the competition here: SynED Press Release

Submitted by: Wendy Porter, ICT-DM Regional Director, Far North Region
Contract Ed SUMMIT 2021

The Contract Ed Summit was held on Thursday, April 22nd. Below you will find the link to the agenda, Power Point presentations, handouts and more.

Statewide CE SHARED Folder in Google drive

Innovative Pathways to Public Service- Pathways to Health Careers: COVID Response in Our Community

Julie Holt, RDEE for health in the Greater Sacramento Region hosted a virtual event for Pathways to Public Service Health Careers:  COVID Response in Our Community on April 9, 2021. This event was provided in partnership with Sacramento County Health Department, UC Davis Health, Innovative Pathways to Public Service, Sacramento Employment Training Agency and the Institute of Local Government.  Over 120 students from ten local high schools attended the event that featured Dr. Blumberg, MD, who is a leading COVID pandemic expert with a specialty in Pediatric Infectious Diseases at UC Davis Children’s Hospital in Sacramento, California.  Dr. Blumberg provided information about his personal journey to becoming a medical doctor as he shared about his commitment to public health, serving others and advocating for policies for health communities.  His expertise and inspiration were an excellent resource for teens considering a career in healthcare fields.  Additionally, Nicki Fairbanks presented on the unique aspects of a career as a pharmacy technician that correlates with the Cosumnes River College program as a crucial career in the pandemic response.


Submitted by Julie Holt, Regional Director, Employer Engagement, Health (North)


Advisory Meeting-Automation & AI in Agriculture and Manufacturing

On Friday, April 30th, in partnership with Valley Vision, the Regional Directors from the Agriculture (Carrie Peterson), Advanced Manufacturing (Jeff Briggs), and Information and Communications Technologies (Cornelius Brown) sectors hosted a regional advisory meeting in the North.  The topic of the meeting was Automation and Artificial Intelligence in Agriculture and Advanced Manufacturing.  There were 70 participants in the 2-hour zoom call.

The first panel was an employer panel discussion around the automation and AI being used currently in these sectors.  Speakers included: Greg Ahart, VP of Operations from Superior Farms (lamb processing; Raf Peters, CEO and Founder of Qcify Inc. (nut processing sorting equipment); Patrick Andersen, President and CFO of Anderson & Sons Shelling Inc. (nut processing).

The second panel included employers that were discussing the direction of up and coming automation and AI.  Speaks included: Bendan O’Donnell, Global Category Director for TOMRA Sorting, Inc. (nut production); Gabe Youtsey, Chief Innovation Officer for UC Agriculture and Natural Resources; and Dirck Schou, CEO, Taqtile (manufacturing equipment).

The Center of Excellence presented on labor projections and current labor market data.

Some of the reoccurring themes included:

  • labor needs
  • labor turnover
  • automation
  • impacts of COVID
  • COE presented on automation and artificial intelligence in our region
  • the need for students to have skills in a variety of areas
  • communication is a key skill for students to have
  • students need to have a passion for what they’re doing

We look forward to our fall meetings with Valley Vision and are glad to be able to work with their organization to host these critical meetings.

Submitted By:  Carrie Peterson, Regional Director, Employer Engagement, Ag, Water & Environmental Technology
SVMA’s New Manufacturing Apprenticeship

On April 27, the Sacramento Valley Manufacturing Alliance (SVMA) presented the first orientation program for employers, educators and candidates interested in the new manufacturing apprenticeship approved by the Department of Labor (DAS approval pending). The apprenticeship is designed to include all manufacturing careers. It combines paid on-the-job training with classroom instruction to prepare workers for highly-skilled careers and supports employers in recruiting and retaining a skilled workforce. The program will launch with a focus on a CNC machinist pathway but will eventually include pathways leading all the way to Manufacturing Engineer. Watch the SVMA Apprenticeship Orientation program. For more information, contact Michael Bell at (916) 432-0741 or by email.

Submitted By:  Jeff Briggs, Regional Directore, Employer Engagement, Advanced Manufacturing (North)
In Case You Missed It

Visit This Link to Watch a Dynamic Discussion on the Impacts of AI on Global Trade and Policy:

Recorded Webinar

Impact of AI on Global Trade and Policy

In recent years, we have witnessed increased advancement in the application of Artificial Intelligence (AI). Automation is shaping the future of how work is being done and has international business leaders wondering about the potential enormity of the impact on human labor, global trade, and policy.

Insights and collaboration in this field by leading California and Asia researchers addresses several key questions and challenges:

  • Where is the role of human capital in this evolving landscape?
  • How can organizations and global partners collaborate to support a new educational pipeline that cultivates human-oriented skills and growth?
  • How can the U.S. and global leaders work together in this new area, which has potential for mutual gain while mitigating some of its inevitable pitfalls?

Areas of Discussion

  • Positives and negatives of AI in relation to human labor – the potential impact in replacing human input or monitoring certain industry job functions.
  • Utilization of AI to carry out predictive actions – improvements in purchasing and inventorying efficiencies, increasing the ability to determine which types of products are of immediate interest to the customer.
  • Physical replacement of humans with AI labor/robots – limitations remain, but technological advancements are rapidly increasing.
  • Use of AI to track health and safety – what will it potentially mean to how we do business in the future.

For more information contact: Gordon Hinkle Regional Director of Industry Engagement Global Trade (North/Far North Region) 916-765-6122 or

Virtual Trade Mission Preparation and eTrade Readiness Workshop

Don’t Miss Our Virtual Trade Mission Preparation and eTrade Readiness Workshop

Thursday, May 13th • 9:00 – 11:00 AM PST

This two-hour virtual event hosted and presented by the California International Trade Center (CITC) will help prepare SMEs in identifying and leveraging virtual trade missions to benefit their eCommerce operations overseas. Partners and presenters include the US Commercial Service, SBA Export, EXIM Bank, and the Long Beach City Chamber of Commerce.

Topics Covered:

Getting the Most from a Virtual Mission

  • Partner Presenter: Felipe Cusnir, Swell Capital
  • Session Description: Understanding logistical elements of VTMs, developing your sales and marketing presence, and how to follow up on prospective leads.

Identifying the Right Virtual Trade Mission

  • Partner Presenter: Julie Anne Hennessy, US Commercial Service
  • Session Description: Selecting the most appropriate overseas markets for your business and knowing how best to prepare and navigate the VTM requirements.

Financing Your Virtual Trade Mission and Overseas Operations

  • Partner Presenters:
  • Simona Racek, CITC
  • Sandra Donzella, Exim Bank
  • Jeff Deiss, SBA Export
  • Session Description: Understanding the costs associated with VTMs, direct and indirect, and knowing your financing options.

Managing the Buyer/Distributor Relationship

  • Partner Presenters:
  • Julie Anne Hennessy, US Commercial Service
  • Perry Goldstein, CITC

Session Description: Once you’ve participated in a VTM, learn how to extend your operations as efficiently as possible in the field.

Register Here

Read More about the Hosts & Panelists

Registration Launched for both Fall 2021 Conferences!!

     We are excited to announce we have launched Fall 2021 Conference Registrations.


TWO CONFERENCES.  We will have an IN-PERSON Conference and a VIRTUAL Conference.

In-Person is September 29 – October 1

Virtual Conference begins on October 12

Why Attend? 

Both conferences will focus on sharing high-quality practices that address a full range of issues facing Career and Workforce Education educators, administrators, and other key stakeholders as you seek to prepare students with the knowledge and skills to succeed in the future of work.

Who Should Attend? 

We invite educational leaders within Career and Workforce Education including faculty, K-12 career educators, employers, industry experts, or sponsors partnering with a community college.

Visit our Website for all the details.

We are accepting Breakout Session Proposals for Fall 2021 In-Person and Virtual. CCAOE invites proposals that foster discovery and problem solving through idea sharing and community building. CCCAOE strongly encourages proposals that balance conceptual and theoretical frameworks with concrete, pragmatic examples. We seek to highlight the how and why of practices, strategies, or models and to facilitate reflection and engagement that helps translate VISION into practice.

Submission Deadline is June 4, 2021




DEI Community of Learning

Join us on Wednesdays at 6 PM as we dive deeper into this work with multiple topic:

We have created a safe space to be vulnerable, to share, to be heard and to actively listen and hear.

As we continue our 6-week journey towards understanding the importance of conscious leadership to advance equity let us focus on “self”.

Not only will you be invited to engage in conversations, but our community of learners will also be invited to join an asynchronous canvas course to learn about strategies to support DEI integration.

We also ask that you share this newsletter with all those in your circles whom you think would like to participate. It is a free series for all. You can attend only one or all 6. The sessions are not dependant on each other. Of course, the more we gather as a Community of Learners, the greater the actions will impact our campuses.

The zoom link is the same every week.

Click here to Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 859 6922 0810

A Constant Contact  went out. It includes a link to last week’s Live-Streamed portion of the session. Only the beginning of these sessions are live-streamed. During the breakout sessions and whole group share-outs, the recording is stopped.

It is important that we have a safe space to be heard and to listen.

If you missed it, the first part of the session was LIVE STREAMED and is available for you to watch now.

Center of Excellence (COE)
North/Far North COE Economic Update

The North/Far North Center of Excellence is sharing a semi-monthly report on job postings, unemployment, industry measures, and other current data. The COE sends out a condensed version of the economic update in the COE North/Far North email newsletter.

Download the May COE economic update here.

 Find this and past economic updates at the North/Far North website.

 Sign up here to receive the economic update in your email inbox.


Unemployment— In February 2021, county unemployment rates in the Far North averaged 8.1%, a drop of just 0.2 percentage points from January. Unemployment rates in the Greater Sacramento (North) counties dropped 0.4 percentage points, falling to 7.3% in February. Unemployment rates fell slightly at a similar rate in March.

Labor Force— The Far North’s labor force totals (unemployed and employed workers) show encouraging signs of growth, but they remain 3.2% lower than at the beginning of 2018. The Greater Sacramento region’s labor force totals appear to have risen above pre-pandemic levels.

Industry Sectors—Health care, construction, and transportation and logistics show resilient jobs numbers. Public sector jobs appear to be back on track to make a full recovery. Manufacturing displays concerning numbers; jobs in the sector are down 7% from early 2020 in the Sacramento region. The hospitality sector’s jobs totals are still 20% to 30% lower than before the pandemic.

Industry trends and jobs postings detailed appendix—The economic update includes a detailed appendix outlining industry and jobs postings trends in transportation and logistics; agriculture, water, and environmental technology; construction; government (public administration); health care and social assistance; hospitality and tourism; and manufacturing.

Submitted by: Aaron Wilcher, Director, North/Far North Center of Excellence,
North Far North News Center
Forever Flexible: Northern Colleges Team Up to Tackle Rising Demand

Mendocino College in conjunction with Shasta College

May 2020 News Center

“Never give up” is more than just a motto for physical therapy assistants. It’s a mantra.  

For the busy professionals tasked with guiding patients around health challenges and impairments, patience is paramount, as a moment of frustration is often a sign that progress is right around the corner.

It’s also the approach that Mendocino and Shasta Colleges are taking with their new joint PTA program — debuting at Mendocino College during the COVID health crisis. With the same spirit of resilience that defines their most courageous patients, students are finding creative solutions to stay on track for these critical careers.

Anne Harvey, who spent two years stuck on waitlists trying to get into a PTA program, is a perfect example. When she was finally accepted to a Bay Area program in her third year of trying, the 200-mile commute from her home in Fort Bragg proved too much stress for her family. Harvey had to withdraw, put her goals on hold, and worked at a family resource center. When that job ended earlier this year, she was back to square one. 

“I had finally thrown out my box of books and notes,” says Harvey.


That’s when a friend told her about Mendocino College’s hybrid Physical Therapy Assistant program, taught in conjunction with Shasta College, and her dream came back into focus.


Sidebar for Mendocino PTA Feature

Turning a Curveball into a New Career: Mendocino College’s Rebecca Martinez


Careers Under Construction: Bulldozing Employment Barriers at CRC

Cosumnes River College

August 2020 News Center

Melissa Silva always wanted to become a construction inspector for the same union as her two older brothers. But even though she applied three times, she still couldn’t land her dream job.

“I passed the test every time,” recalls Silva. “But the problem with me was the panel interview.”

Realizing the need to shore up her confidence along with her industry knowledge, she enrolled in Cosumnes River College’s Construction Technology program to start digging the trenches for a stronger career foundation.

Soon, the walls that had blocked Silva’s career progress began crumbling down. She immediately took to the CRC program’s hands-on, workforce-focused philosophy and was soon stocking an impressive toolbox, assembling skills in power tool use, carpentry, materials and blueprint reading. Along the way, she picked up her essential OSHA 10 certification, bulldozing yet another barrier to her dream career.