Dr. Jay K. Box, president of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS), has been appointed to the American Workforce Policy Advisory Board. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross and Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump announced the 25 members of the board. KCTCS is a Presenting Partner of Shaping Our Appalachian Region, Inc. (SOAR).
Established under Executive Order 13845, this board will work directly with the National Council for the American Worker, leveraging the knowledge of its members to develop and implement a strategy to revamp the American workforce to better meet the challenges of the 21st century. The board, co-chaired by Secretary Ross and Ivanka Trump, brings together members from diverse backgrounds including educational institutions, state and local governments and CEOs from several major companies such as Apple, Walmart, Visa and Lockheed Martin.
“I am extremely honored and humbled by this appointment,” Box said. “A shortage of skilled and educated workers is the number one challenge for most businesses in the U.S.”
Currently there are a record 7.3 million unfilled jobs in the United States, and American workers, who are our country’s most valuable resource, need the training to fill them.
“Our work in Kentucky is focused on this every day,” Box said. “We know many of the skills that are most in demand require apprenticeships and short-term certificates, not bachelor’s degrees. Based on partnerships they’ve created with their local businesses, our colleges align their programs with employers’ needs. This ensures our programs are relevant, and our graduates go to work.”
As the leader of the 16 colleges of KCTCS, Box is deeply involved in workforce education and training in Kentucky. He also serves on the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce’s Kentucky Business-Education Roundtable, which is focused on aligning workforce and education programs with real-life employment opportunities.
Box is the only community college system president on the council. His term expires in 2020.