In this blog series we examine how to center equity and access at each step of the Perkins V Comprehensive Local Needs Assessment (CLNA) process. This series is a guide for Perkins consortia, stakeholders, and community members who are interested in better understanding how to advance equity of access to quality programs of study and in-demand careers.

Part 2 – Taking Labor Market Indicator Analysis Further with an Equity Lens

Author: Erin Olson, Director of Strategic Research, and guest contributor, Eva Scates-Winston, CTE Equity Specialist, Minnesota State

RealTime Talent produced a series of reports and corresponding presentations to support Perkins Consortia (CTE) in navigating changes in their local labor markets due to COVID-19.  These reports explore how changes in the local labor market may impact enrollment, industry, career advancement, and the needed programs of study by region of Minnesota. This blog is based on Erin Olson’s Metro Workforce Trends & Careers of Tomorrow webinar and the discussion questions presented by Eva Scates-Winston, Minnesota State Colleges and Universities’ CTE Equity Specialist, that highlight areas where the labor market analysis can be taken further with an equity lens. Follow along in the recorded webinar or slide deck.

Practical guide to taking labor market indicator analysis further with an equity lens

Consortia can use disaggregated student educational attainment and CTE program enrollment data alongside labor market indicators, like the forecast by industry cluster in the slide below, to understand how career pathways can guide diverse student groups to high-wage, high-skill, and high-demand careers.

Questions that consortia may ask include: What student groups are on a path for high-wage roles with high forecasted growth? What student groups are on a path to roles that are low-wage or have a low forecasted growth? What CTE program processes or structures could be in place to positively impact these student populations?

After analyzing the occupation gaps in the slide below, it may be tempting to train to fill the gaps. To promote equity of access to the most high-opportunity career paths, it is necessary to understand the differences between occupations of shortage that are in demand and growing versus occupations of surplus that often have high turnover.

Consortia may consider the following questions: How are you assessing diverse populations’ concerns and needs for training versus demand for labor? What training in partnership can be offered to diverse populations to build their skill sets and increase economic mobility, not just fill labor shortage?

The COVID pandemic has had unique impacts on specific occupations and industries beyond the broader trends forecasted. The pandemic has accelerated talent surplus anticipated in lower-wage, lower-education positions, particularly for high contact intensity positions, and those that cannot be transitioned to a remote or hybrid work environment as illustrated in the slide below. These are unique impacts more heavily experienced by BIPOC talent, women, and youth since March 2020.

To ensure targeted solutions are mobilized for those who have the most immediate, pressing needs, evaluate occupations negatively impacted by the COVID pandemic and the consequences experienced by diverse populations that were employed in these jobs locally.

Consortia may consider the following question: What practices and innovations can occur to address this in your strategic planning?

Consider how the disaggregated data on diverse populations by program of study, either in student enrollment data or local demographic data, map to Origin, Gateway, and Target occupations as described in the slide below.

Consortia may consider the following questions: How do student demographics compare to occupational employment demographics? Consider where the CTE courses are offered and who’s enrolled in those courses alongside local talent priorities. What policy, practices, or funding impede their participation?

Check out the CTE reports, recorded webinars, and presentation slides for all regional and statewide findings.

Click here to read our first blog post in this series, where we discuss using an equity gap analysis in the Perkins V Comprehensive Local Needs Assessment.

Click here to read the final blog in this series guest contributor, Eva Scates-Winston the CTE Equity Specialist at Minnesota State Colleges and Universities, explores strategies for a root cause analysis. These recommendations can be used for CTE consortia to evaluate the results of the local needs assessment.

Part 1     Part 3