Workforce & Education
The RDC currently has two initiatives under the Workforce and Education Program; the Northern New Mexico Workforce Integration Network (WIN) and the Higher Education Workforce project.
Northern New Mexico Workforce Integration Network (WIN)
North Central New Mexico Economic Development District, the Regional Development Corporation, and Santa Fe Community College were awarded a $6.4 million American Rescue Plan Good Jobs Challenge grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) to launch the Northern New Mexico Workforce Integration Network (WIN).
WIN aims to transform and diversify the regional economy by building a robust workforce in the key areas of Healthcare and Skilled Trades, leading to increased equity and more high-paying jobs. WIN will be open to unemployed or underemployed adults, or adults looking to skill up, with a focus on low-income individuals, people of color, and people recovering from substance use disorder and/or former incarceration. The RDC serves as the backbone for the Skilled Trades sector of the WIN project.
RDC's 2021 Workforce and Academic Network Pilot Project accomplished significant groundwork building stakeholder trust, planning, and convening in the skilled trades that helped propel WIN into a reality. The Workforce and Academic Network Pilot Project gathered industry and academic stakeholders to help job seekers and students more easily access training and education for the construction skilled trades industry in northern New Mexico. It also highlighted the role that stakeholders play to illuminate paths for working collectively to address the workforce shortage in the construction and skilled trades in northern New Mexico.
LEARN & CONNECT WITH WIN here.
Higher Education Workforce
The Higher Education Workforce project is a partnership between the RDC and Northern New Mexico higher education institutions to identify training needs and develop a well-educated workforce in the region. The partnership aims to help Northern New Mexico’s businesses find skilled workers and help ensure jobs are filled by in-state and in-county workers who want to stay in their communities after receiving an education at two- and four-year colleges in the area.
The RDC works with six regional institutions of higher education to create “clear, coherent and structured educational experiences” for students pursuing relevant certificates and/or degree programs that will successfully lead to careers in the region. Each institution — University of New Mexico-Los Alamos, University of New Mexico-Taos, Luna Community College, New Mexico Highlands University, Northern New Mexico College and Santa Fe Community College — tailors their program to their unique student population, community needs, and academic curriculum.
Paid student internships that offer real-world experience to students and provide employers with a way to meet potential employees
Soft skill /professional development workshops and courses
Accelerated learning programs that provide fast-track learning in skills such as math and English that are required by employers for specific jobs
Data collection in order to better align curriculum with regional jobs
Together, these partnerships and initiatives help build a strong workforce in the RDC’s seven-county area.
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