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21st Century Skills for Workforce - COTC
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  Vicki Maple, Director, Workforce Development Innovation Center
  Central Ohio Technical College, OH




With a passion for empowering people by helping them to enhance their skills and advance their career-paths and goals, the Workforce Development Innovation Center (WDIC) at Central Ohio Technical College (COTC), under the direction of Vicki Maple, has been recognized statewide for the impact being made on audiences that range from small and large businesses, to the at-risk youth population and the social service agencies that serve them.

One particular program, 21st Century Skills for the Workforce: Building Workforce and Leadership Proficiency, was designed in direct response to both industry leaders sharing their workforce concerns at a series of roundtable discussions, and also to calls from social service agencies acknowledging the need for the unemployed and underemployed to begin crafting their career pathways with these much needed skillsets. Participants learn technical terminology and methodology employed by the topics, often including role-play and team exercises to enrich their learning experience, enabling them to recall and apply the material long after the sessions have ended. The four-part program offers stackable, interactive sessions, with a direct approach to the relevancy of and correlation to the information learned through the following modules: (a) Team Building/Connectivity; (b) Temperament Basics/Building Community; (c) Leadership Theories in Practice; and (d) Interpersonal Communication, Conflict Resolution, and Compliance and Character: The Written and Unwritten Laws, Rules, and Ethics.

Likewise, the WDIC’s relationship with area social service agencies, while long-standing, has also grown exponentially over the past year through another program that was designed to meet their own agency workforce needs, Case Management Training: A Person-Centered Approach. This training supports the State’s Comprehensive Case Management and Employment Program (CCMEP) and is delivered specifically to caseworkers or those being promoted to a case management position within agencies. Through a collaborative effort between the WDIC and the Human Services academic division at COTC, this stackable course approach was designed for courses to be taken in succession, with intensive sessions addressing the foundational Case Management concepts, as well as the real-world application, especially within a rapidly changing culture.

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