University of Alaska launches largest fundraising campaign in state history

The University of Alaska system has launched the public phase of For Alaska, a multi-year fundraising campaign with the goal of raising $200 million by 2024. To date, more than $135 million has been raised from more than 16,000 donors since the quiet phase of the campaign began in 2016.

Read the full article here.

Source: UAA Green and Gold

Alaska Live Job Shadows – Health Care Occupations

Alaska guest panelists from the health care industry recently shared about their careers in an Alaska live job shadow event. There were 210 registrations from individuals, classrooms, teachers who shared the event through their own Zoom link, home school students, job centers, tribal organizations, and industry partners. Twenty-eight school districts joined, representing multiple schools and villages across the state.

Students were able to ask questions through the Zoom chat and through interactive Google Slides.

The Zoom recording is available to share out to classrooms, students/families, colleagues, and community groups – watch here.

Find Alaska LIVE Job Shadow information, including registrations for future events on the AKCIS.org web page.

Source: Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education – AKCIS

Opinion: University of Alaska is one of our state’s greatest assets

Nearly a year since the first case of COVID-19 was discovered in Alaska, the pandemic continues to shake the state’s communities and economy. Many Alaskans are still out of work and struggling financially.

The Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development reports average job losses for 2020 were 12,400, an 8.3 percent loss in employment compared to 2019. Anchorage now has a five-year recession and the pandemic to recover from. To see a full economic recovery, the city needs to add 18,400 jobs, a feat that will take years to accomplish.

But even during these challenging times, there are opportunities. The Anchorage Economic Development Corp. forecasts the addition of 4,000 jobs in 2021, the largest year-over-year increase in Anchorage jobs since 2001. A healthy housing market is driving new residential construction. A nearly $700 million logistics facility is just one of the potential projects coming to Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport. There is the potential for billions of dollars of new North Slope oil investments in the next five years.

Another bright spot is the University of Alaska. In Anchorage, the university is an important community asset. When COVID-19 created urgent needs in the local healthcare sector, the university responded swiftly. UAA trained more than 400 contract tracers; graduated and licensed 75 senior nursing students early to meet increased demand; provided personal protective equipment; and manufactured hand sanitizer and 3D printed face shields and ventilator parts. University experts in epidemiology, economic modeling, small business mentoring and mental health counseling assisted the state’s pandemic response.

Read the full article here.

Source: Opinion: University of Alaska is one of our state’s greatest assets | Juneau Empire

Alaska Higher Education Almanac 2021

Alaska’s unique challenges in higher education and workforce training shape the Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education’s (ACPE) strategic goals, and provide opportunities for innovation.

One of these challenges is connecting communities of students and education leaders with the information they need about the overall state of higher education in Alaska and about postsecondary education institutions across the state. A first step towards addressing this need for timely and accessible information is ACPE’s Alaska Higher Education Almanac.

Read the Almanac here.

Source: Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education

New workforce data highlights the University of Alaska’s impact on preparing students for Alaska jobs & good wages

An in-depth analysis of nine major Alaska industries captures the impact that university programs have in preparing its students for jobs in Alaska’s workforce. The reports answer key questions related to the largest and fastest growing occupations that require some postsecondary education and highlights important employment indicators such as average wages earned, where UA grads work in Alaska, what industries they work in, and how they help boost the Alaska hire rate.

The workforce development and institutional research offices at the University of Alaska partnered with the Research and Analysis Section in the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development to create the reports, which demonstrate UA graduate outcomes in nine key fields — administration and finance, aviation, construction, fisheries and marine science, health, information technology, mining, oil and gas, and teacher education. The reports can be found at https://www.alaska.edu/ research/wd/reports.php.

“We are in the business of creating Alaska’s workforce,” UA Interim President Pat Pitney told the Senate Education Committee on Feb. 3, adding that 70 to 90 percent of UA graduates stay in Alaska and find employment. 

The health report, for example, shows that of more than 2,300 nursing graduates in both 2-year and 4-year programs, 89 percent remain in Alaska after graduation and are employed at an average wage of $70,000.

Teri Cothren, University of Alaska Associate Vice President Workforce Development, said: “This data demonstrates the success of our core programs and how we are contributing to Alaska’s high‐demand industries and economy.” 

In preparing the reports, the university analyzed labor market information to identify the largest and fastest-growing occupations in the nine industries, then linked related UA programs to those jobs. Detailed employment and wage information was extracted from employer quarterly reports filed with the Dept. of Labor. That means the numbers are based on a comprehensive match of all graduates who remain and work in Alaska.

“The economic value of training and education is abundantly clear in the data,” said Dan Robinson, Chief Labor Research & Analysis, Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development. “More education and training also correlate strongly with lower unemployment rates.”  

Median earnings, for example, jumped from $35,328 for high school graduates to $44,619 for Alaskans with an associate degree, $57,708 for those with a bachelor’s degree, and $77,402 for holders of graduate or professional degrees. 

Read the full article here.

Source: UA News Center