It has been my pleasure on behalf of the Strategic Ohio Council for Higher Education (SOCHE) to collaborate closely with Melissa Cutcher and Technology First for many years. Some of our earliest collaborations were through Cin-Day Cyber and Career Adventures Camp. As the President of SOCHE, my focus is on leading our organization in collaborating with K-12 districts, colleges, universities, and industry to transform the economy through education and employment. This mission focus has resulted in sitting in many meetings at tables with Technology First.
SOCHE’s workforce development mission set has led us to many collaborative initiatives with Technology First and its many members. This regular engagement between our organizations has led us to recognize the need for closer organizational alignment and I’m very excited that Technology First has asked me and SOCHE to the inner circle through their Board of Directors. Our organizational missions at SOCHE and Technology First are very closely aligned and have led us to work on the same project on multiple occasions.
Through SOCHE’s work on Technology First’s Board of Directors, we hope to increase our work together and further align our work for the benefit of workforce development of information technology professionals across the region, while we work together to build upon our region’s existing economic development prowess. Close relationships through SOCHE’s 22 College and University members and Technology First’s members can only help our region become the premier location for professionals in IT as well as for businesses who are looking for a new home.
Our region has the workforce needed for the future with over 400K college and university students and close to 15K High School students. Our next generation of working Daytonians is already here in our region and it is our job to show them the pathway to great careers. We can make this happen through our engagement in our schools as well as by encouraging our students to spend time in our companies learning about our many different industries. Over the next few years as we manage decreasing numbers of students in each of our schools it is imperative for all businesses to engage and ensure that we are assisting all students to achieve their potential with at least a high school diploma and potentially a post-secondary certification or degree. I look forward to working with all of you to continue to make the Dayton region a great place to live, work and play!