Press Releases

Doing What Matters

IRVINE, CA - Phoenix Energy Technologies has participated in an externship with the California Community College's Doing What Matters for jobs and the Economy Initiative.

PhoenixET, based in Irvine, CA, is an energy management company that monitors and controls energy usage at an enterprise level.

Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy (DWM) began four years ago in the California Community College as a statewide program to address the growing employment gap in middle-skill workers in the energy and construction industries.

"There are multiple pathways to multiple opportunities," said Len Pettis, Deputy Sector Navigator of Orange County. Pettis works to build relationships between local businesses and the California Community College system, tailoring career technical education (CTE) programs to fit the specific needs that employers are looking for.

California Community Colleges currently have roughly 2.2 million students enrolled in programs across the state's 113 colleges. Ten-year projections show roughly 2.4 million job openings in major occupation groups by the year 2025. Modifying the current college programs to match the skillsneeded to fill these job openings is vital to the continued growth of the California economy.

A major issue that has made job placement difficult is a lack of uniformity across the community college system. Doing What Matters is working to address that problem by creating standardized classes and certificates that are designed to fill the needs of local businesses.

Doing What Matters collaborates with local companies such as Phoenix Energy Technologies to learn more about the constantly changing technology and engineering industries as well as placing qualified students into internships. The program also sends educators on externships such as one PhoenixET participated in. During these externships, educators sit in with employees and learn more about the day-to-day operations and the skills that are necessary for these positions.

According to Pettis, employers like Phoenix Energy Technologies reach out to those involved with the DWM program when they need an employee with a specific skill set. Using the network of educators in the community college system, they can identify students who possess the required skills and place them into either an internship or a full-time job after graduation.