Redlands Community College and Canadian Valley Technology Center have worked together for decades to expand educational offerings and support area businesses, knowing that collaboration was the key to true economic prosperity in their service region. Their efforts have been recognized by the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education with the Regents Business Partnership Excellence Award.
From education programs for high school students and adults to workforce development, this partnership has had a far-reaching impact.
“Throughout my many years at Redlands, we have enjoyed a strong partnership with Canadian Valley Technology Center,” said Redlands President Jack Bryant. “We made great strides while working with Dr. Lutts’ predecessor, Dr. Greg Winters, and now under her leadership, we are expanding programs to prepare students for careers in highly competitive fields.”
Both schools have recruited qualified faculty to meet Higher Learning Commission requirements in the teaching of mathematics while their science faculties collaborate to ensure course taught in the Project Lead the Way Biomedical Sciences STEM Academy meet the necessary requirements for college credit.
Always looking for ways to better serve their community, Canadian Valley and Redlands co-sponsored a Manufacturing Extension Agent through the Oklahoma Alliance for Manufacturing and served as members of the Southwest Oklahoma Impact Coalition providing numerous internship opportunities and service to industries throughout the region.
“We are so appreciative of Redlands’ staff for including Canadian Valley on the award nomination,” said CV Tech Superintendent Dr. Gayla Lutts. “For so many years Redlands has been an educational partner with CV Tech in terms of helping prepare a workforce to meet the demands of area companies. We accomplish much working collaboratively to focus on meeting these needs in the best interests of students.
“Education at Canadian Valley has certainly evolved to include college-prep programs, such as Biomedical Sciences and Pre-Engineering. Each year, nearly one-third of our graduates continue on to pursue a college education. For many, the choice is not college or Career Tech, it’s both.”
Last year, Canadian Valley Technology Center was the recipient one of the nine Workforce Center of Excellence programs awarded under the Oklahoma Works Together program. Redlands Community College, along with numerous business partners in its service area, serve on their advisory board. Those collaborative efforts serve existing and prospective employers’ workforce needs by coordinating resources and services.
Continuing to fill unmet needs in their community, Canadian Valley Technology Center and Redlands Community College collaborated earlier this year with the El Reno Chamber of Commerce to sponsor a Small Business Development Center field agent to provide small business owners and start-up companies a plethora of free services and networking opportunities to bring success to their businesses.
The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education’s Regents Business Partnership Excellence Award highlights successful partnerships between higher education institutions and public, private and nonprofit organizations. These partnerships between business and industry and the state system institutions ensure the continuation of building the skilled workforce needed for Oklahoma to be globally competitive.