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Future Ready Iowa Alliance Continues Momentum in 2017 to Address Iowa’s Skills Gap

Iowa Workforce Development Communications
For Immediate Release
Date: January 3, 2017
Contact: Courtney Maxwell Greene
Telephone: 515-281-9646

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Today, Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds and the Future Ready Iowa Alliance including business and community leaders, started off the New Year with a renewed focus on helping Iowans get necessary skills to meet employer needs in the 21st century economy.

The second meeting was held at the Des Moines Botanical Center, and participants learned about a similar initiative in Tennessee. The goal of Drive to 55 is to equip 55 percent of Tennesseans with a college degree or certificate by 2025. Iowa’s Future Ready Iowa goal is 70 percent of Iowans in the workforce to have education or training beyond high school by 2025.

Five Iowa working groups, established to advance key analysis and recommendations, provided updates to the Lt. Governor and her co-chair, Principal CEO Dan Houston.  The five working groups are:

  • Get Iowans Ready, chaired by Director Ryan Wise, Iowa Department of Education
  • Get Iowans Credentialed, chaired by Des Moines Area Community College President Rob Denson
  • Upskilling Iowans, chaired by Hawkeye Community College President Dr. Linda Allen
  • Demand Driven (Get Iowans Hired), chaired by Renewable Energy Group President and CEO Daniel Oh
  • Communications and Outreach, chaired by Northeast Iowa Community College President Dr. Liang Wee

The Future Ready Iowa Alliance, which is comprised of leaders from 27 Iowa counties, is charged with developing and recommending a strategic plan to the Governor by October 31, 2017. An 18 member Future Ready Iowa Alliance Executive Committee provides guidance to the co-chairs.

The next meeting of the Future Ready Iowa Alliance will take place March 14, 2017, at the Des Moines Botanical Center.