Information Communication Technologies & Digital Media Sector Team

Charlotte Augenstein, ICT-DM Regional Director in Los Angeles, did not skip a beat when the pivot to remote learning happened in March. She quickly connected with her regional colleagues to organize virtual programming to serve the students, faculty and counselors in her region.

One such event, the Regional Counselor Conference, drew more than 400 registrants. The conference was a collaboration with the Los Angeles Regional Consortium and other regional partners, bringing counselors from across the 19 community colleges in the area together virtually to discuss topics like labor market data, K-14 career pathways, and how to keep students engaged and motivated.

As schools across California closed, counselors needed information about how they could best serve their students, and promote workforce training to meet local employer needs. Augenstein knew that community colleges could meet those needs and worked with partners like Los Angeles Regional Consortium Chair Karen Childers.

“I was working on this alone but quickly found partnering with our LA Consortium chair would receive the attention warranted and more key talent would support it,” Augenstein said. “I believe Karen Childers was probably thinking the same thing!”

The event’s keynote speaker was Kevin Fleming, Vice President of Strategic Development at Norco College, who facilitated a discussion on the best practices for online counseling. Fleming typically gives keynote lectures at conferences but worked with the planning committee to lead a panel to better serve the needs of counselors during a period of uncertainty.

“Counselors in K-12 were not sure of the Regional Directors roles and how we could support them,” Augenstein said. “We received huge interest in hosting and supporting career-focused events with districts across the county.” 

Other sessions at the conference included an overview of labor market data from the Los Angeles Center of Excellence for Labor Market Research and a panel on preparing students for the future of work featuring Regional Directors from each of the community college sectors in the Los Angeles Region. All of the sessions were recorded and are available on the LAOCRC website.

Response from attendees was overwhelmingly positive, and Augenstein is already collaborating with colleagues in her region to plan more events.

“They felt a sense of security in that there are peers and key talent who can guide them,” Augenstein said. “Some attendees mentioned that they felt they were in a little bubble without opportunities to get exposed to more insight as to what’s out there and learn more. They learned how sectors cross each other and how Regional Directors support career pathways.”

Upcoming events in the Los Angeles region include:

May 7: Virtual Q&A with Regional Directors for Glendale Community College Career Day. All of the Los Angeles Regional Directors will take questions from students and faculty about their sectors and how to turn education into career opportunities.

May 29: The first ICT-DM Regional Advisory meeting for the Los Angeles region.

June 4,5: Microsoft Azure Faculty Training

June 13: Los Angeles Regional Cloud Day, with community college students, alumni, and prospective students. The event will include workshops, a hackathon, industry panel discussions, and more.

Mid-June:  Summer Series Virtual Tech Talks featuring training on Microsoft Teams, LinkedIn Learning, podcasting, and more.

Augenstein also supported the Microsoft AI and Azure Summit  and will be supporting other Regional Directors with LinkedIn Learning “train the trainer” workshops designed to give faculty the tools they need to help their students make the most of the resources available through LinkedIn Learning.

“As we pivot to online learning, it is imperative that all key talent know the benefits for both faculty and students using LinkedIn and LinkedIn Learning no matter where you are in your career,” Augenstein said.

For more information, contact Charlotte at .

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