To celebrate the first anniversary of the Inland Empire/Desert Region Career Education Map, an in-person Mapping Summit convened on July 14th in downtown Riverside to discuss this vital resource’s success and future possibilities, including how to sustainably develop the map and increase its value for a variety of audiences.
The event was hosted by the Inland Empire/Desert Region Center of Excellence, K-14 TAP and K-12 Pathway Coordinators, and San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools Alliance for Education.
Recognizing that the strength of the Inland Empire/Desert Region emanates from regional collaboration, the development of this resource relies heavily on support and feedback from stakeholders. With 40 regional partners and stakeholders in attendance, the mapping team gained insights from a diverse group of users on how the map is currently used and how it could be tailored to address the needs of different audiences.
The map has been utilized for action planning, curriculum alignment, locating regional program offerings and local employers, and finding connections between high school pathways and community college programs.
Map development discussions concentrated on increasing the accessibility of this resource for new users, as well as functionality improvements (search and filter features) and data elements. The mapping summit determined that the resource’s comprehensiveness could be improved by including additional career education partners, early college credit/articulation/dual enrollment opportunities, and apprenticeships. Through regional support and collaboration, the mapping team is confident that the Career Education Map can become the foremost source for informing the alignment of community college and K-12 career education programs/pathways with high-quality employment opportunities.