Kishwaukee College is committed to supporting a strong regional workforce by creating
partnerships with local businesses, which in turn provides opportunities for students
and job seekers in our communities.
During the June 8 Board of Trustees meeting, LaCretia Konan, Dean of Workforce & Community
Education, and Chase Budziak, Dean of Instruction, presented on business-education
partnerships over the past year. During FY21, the College assisted more than 250 employers
through educational partnerships, including an online job board, on-the-job training
and small business development.
“Over the past several years, it has become increasingly clear the important role
educational institutions play in creating a sustainable local workforce,” Budziak
Kish utilizes the College Central Online Job Board, which is a free service that allows
local employers to reach Kish students and alumni with open positions. Those seeking
jobs have access to local and national postings and can create a portfolio to have
employers discover them. During the past year, 227 employers used the online job board
with 729 total jobs posted. A total of 268 students used the resource to assist in
their career search.
Students at Kish also have a variety of options for on-the-job training through internships,
apprenticeships or other work-study opportunities. Over the past year, 100 Kish students
were placed in on-the-job training with 97 local employers. Several businesses helped
cover tuition costs for their student-employees, with the goal of hiring the student
after they graduate.
Ahmed Elfaki, Kishwaukee College’s Student Trustee, shared he is currently benefitting
from a summer internship with Mortenson Construction.
“My internship with Mortenson has been educational and exciting. I get the opportunity
to experience what an engineer's day-to-day activities are like, as well as the many
different scopes that take part to complete a construction project,” Elfaki said.
“This will have a big impact on my career as I now have hands-on experience that will
help me with future internships and job opportunities.”
Local businesses also participate in Advisory Committees, providing information and
feedback to ensure program requirements meet industry needs. Kish strives to prepare
students for in-demand careers in the region, and advisory committees offer necessary
insights to keep up with a changing job market. In FY21, Kish hosted 29 program advisory
committee meetings with 78 industry representatives and 66 employers attending.
Through a partnership with the Small Business Development Center at Waubonsee Community
College, Kish offers small business development services in the district. In the past
year, 52 local businesses were served through 108 hours of small business consulting.
Additionally, the partnership hosted 28 small business events with 196 participants.
“Not only are we meeting the needs of our employers through our job boards, but we
are also providing talent for the workforce through on-the-job training that is real-world
experience for our students,” Konan said. “We’re really excited about what we are
doing and where we are heading.”
To learn more about Kish’s programs and services, visit www.kish.edu.