With the passage of HB 2398, signed into law on July 28, 2009, Oregon joined a growing list of states to offer the National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC). The NCRC is a nationally recognized certificate that documents foundational workplace skills in three core areas that are critical to the success of majority of jobs in the workplace. These skills are:
- Applied Mathematics
- Reading for Information
- Locating Information
These three work-skill areas have been validated by ACT analysis of over 17,000 occupations nationwide, including jobs at all levels, across all types of organizations. The NCRC is a portable certificate utilized by thousands of employers and job applicants in over 30 states. From the standpoint of hiring managers, the NCRC helps identify qualified applicants. For job applicants, the NCRC helps prove and strengthen workplace skills.
Statewide implementation is led by the Department of Community Colleges and Workforce Development, in collaboration with E3. René Léger, former E3 Executive Director, serves as the executive on loan to provide dedicated leadership and focus, working closely with staff and key partners.
Oregon’s NCRC was officially launched in January 2011 by Governor Kitzhaber and over 100 key public and private sector leaders. The Governor has identified the NCRC as one of his administration’s key workforce development strategies. The program has evolved from a regional pilot phase in 2009-10 to its current phase of early statewide implementation. Highlights include:
- Building initial capacity to deliver the NCRC assessments statewide through the Local Workforce Investment Boards and their local partners.
- Awarding over 6,900 certificates by May 1, 2011.
- Securing the endorsements of key business associations and industry groups including Associated Oregon Industries, Oregon Business Association, Oregon Business Council, Oregon Business Plan, Portland Business Alliance, Energy Consortium of Oregon & SW Washington, and Manufacturing 21.
- Gaining support from over 200 employers for the program.
- Extensive print and electronic media coverage statewide.
- Development of website and promotion & training materials.
- Establishment of a statewide NCRC Implementation Committee comprised of private and public sector leaders to guide the implementation of the program.
- Develop "work-ready communities" around regions of high NCRC attainment and industry clusters to attract business investment in Oregon.
- Strengthen the statewide delivery system for the NCRC.
- Create strong demand for the certificate among employers and job seekers.
- Grow the number of certificate earners.
- Measure progress.
- Maintain sustainable funding
- Build awareness of Oregon’s NCRC among job seekers and employers
- Foster demand for Oregon’s NCRC – among both job applicants and employers – by spelling out the value and tangible benefits of certification, and sharing the success stories of Oregonians using the NCRC.
- Continue strong program oversight by an implementation committee comprised of public and private leaders.
- Oregon Workforce Investment Board
- Local Workforce Investment Boards
- Department of Community Colleges and Workforce Development
- Oregon Employment Department
- Office of the Governor
- Community Colleges
- Oregon Business Association
- Oregon Business Council
For more information go to Oregon NCRC.org