NACCE Acquires SkillPointe to Connect Students to Community College Programs and Help Solve the Skills Gap
NACCE Acquires SkillPointe to Connect Students to Community College Programs for High-Earning Careers.
NACCE and SkillPointe Join Forces to Solve the Skills Gap.
The National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE) announced the acquisition of the SkillPointe technology platform at the Cary Chamber of Commerce office in Cary, North Carolina this morning. Higher education leaders, business executives, and public officials gathered to celebrate the acquisition. Founders of SkillPointe agreed to donate the technology platform, valued at over $6 million, to NACCE, which is a national leader in entrepreneurship education in community colleges.
“Today, 60% of high school grads pursue a traditional four-year degree, but after two years nearly half leave college without any credentials or certifications, often because they started down the wrong career path. At the same time, employers are struggling to fill jobs that require a relatively low investment in training and have tremendous earnings potential. This is the reason that SkillPointe was created and why an alignment with NACCE offers a transformative opportunity for higher education and workforce development,” said Todd Wilson, founder of SkillPointe and advisor to NACCE.
The SkillPointe platform lists over 1,000 community colleges and their 60,000 training programs organized under 80 in-demand career paths that require a low amount of training, connecting students to jobs with high earnings potential.
“Seventy-five percent of the SkillPointe audience has not visited a community college website. SkillPointe drives a new segment of underemployed students to community colleges and offers employers the opportunity to secure skilled workers for unfilled jobs. With over one million users to date and 54 percent of them being ethnically diverse, employers can acquire skilled workers and strengthen their workforce,” said Rebecca Corbin, president & CEO of NACCE.
“The vision of NACCE is equitable access to postsecondary education and prosperity for all. With nearly 400 community colleges in our network nationwide, including 34 of the 58 North Carolina Community Colleges, we believe that the SkillPointe platform will accelerate NACCE’s leadership role in solving the skills gap,” said Chris Whaley, president of Roane State Community College and chair of the NACCE Board of Directors.
Supporting Workforce Efforts
The SkillPointe platform guides visitors through career exploration, training requirements, licensing requirements, scholarship opportunities, and salary information all in one place. According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, as of August 2023, North Carolina’s labor force participation rate continues to face a worker shortage with only 55 workers for every 100 jobs.
“SkillPointe has achieved great success nationally with well over one million users to date. Its audience is highly diverse, and the platform enhances NACCE’s ability to expand entrepreneurship education in local and regional communities. The SkillPointe platform helps to grow the supply of skilled employees that employers need. The 90-second SkillPointe quiz aligns student interests with the career paths covered on SkillPointe, and many of the pathways can also lead to self-employment,” said Wilson.
So far, over 60,000 national SkillPointe users have been referred to local community college websites to continue exploration of the programs. These referrals must continue to grow since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports there will be over 3.3 million job openings annually for the career paths that SkillPointe promotes, especially considering that the referrals convert to enrolled students at a high rate.
Along with acquiring SkillPointe, NACCE added Debbie Poplin, SkillPointe’s former executive director, to the NACCE team as Chief of Staff. Alvin Townley will remain in his role as Executive Director of the SkillPointe Foundation, an affiliated organization that provides scholarships for students pursuing the career paths profiled on SkillPointe. Todd Wilson will continue to serve as an advisor working closely with the NACCE staff.
NACCE is a 501(c)3 nonprofit association of faculty, administrators, presidents, and entrepreneurs focused on igniting entrepreneurship in classrooms, on campuses and in communities. NACCE supports job creation and entrepreneurs in 46 states. NACCE represents nearly 400 colleges and approximately 3.3 million students and has its headquarters in Cary, North Carolina. Visit www.nacce.com for more information.
SkillPointe champions skills-based careers by offering a self-assessment tool, career exploration, access to training programs, scholarships, and thousands of listings for well-paying, in-demand jobs. Visitors to SkillPointe will find information about in-demand industries, including business, communications, construction, energy, healthcare, hospitality, information technology, manufacturing, public service, and transportation. Visit www.skillpointe.com for more information.