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Business Education Alliance

Created in 2012 and comprised of business champions, public school districts, nonprofits and local colleges and universities, the BEA aligns business and education to cultivate a globally competitive workforce for the region.

Vision: A seamless partnership that produces a globally competitive workforce for the region

Mission: Aligning education and business communities to ensure a productive workforce needed for sustained economic growth for our region

2015 Milestones

  • Literacy: Increasing literacy is identified as a critical strategy for increasing post-secondary certificate and degree attainment and thereby enhancing Wichita’s future workforce. The Wichita Community Foundation funded a study that identified strengths and potential gaps in our community’s existing early literacy programs and provided recommendations on possible efforts to impact literacy achievements.
  • Workforce Development: The lack of non-cognitive, or “soft,” skills of the incoming workforce are a significant concern for our business leaders. The BEA established a Soft Skills Taskforce to study the area of soft skills, which produced “Tools for Learning, Tools for Life.” This report outlined 11 recommendations for a coherent K-12 multi-year initiative to improve and measure soft-skill development in Wichita and the surrounding area.

2016 Action Plan

  • Literacy: Continue work with the Wichita Community Foundation to build upon and strengthen our area’s literacy achievement, including support of efforts to align and inform strategies that evaluate the importance of reading to young children.
  • Workforce Development: Begin implementation of recommendations outlined in the Soft Skills Taskforce report. Develop business and civic partnerships in schools by creating a “Principal for a Day” experience for business leaders to shadow a principal, and a “Mock Job Interview Day” experience for a select group of students to learn essential skills on interviewing and will experience a mock interview with a professional from the community.
  • Workforce Readiness: Support the Workforce Alliance’s Youth Employment Project, a program developed to assist young adults in finding summer internships by offering training in resume creation, interview prep, soft skills, customer service and more.
  • Certificate & Degree Attainment: Support the Achieve Kansas mission to increase post-secondary certificate and degree attainment, as well as their initiative to assist high school students through financial aid workshops.
  • Policy: Raise awareness among policymakers regarding how our business and education communities are working together to advance priorities that lead to a well-educated workforce for our region.

Current Liaisons:

Allen, Gibbs & Houlik, LC
BCS Performance Solutions
Berry Companies
Bothner and Bradley
Building Controls and Services
Capital Enterprises
Child Start
Cox Machine Company
Douglass Wealth Management
Exploration Place
Frederick Plumbing & Heating
Greater Wichita Partnership
House of Schwan
Kansas Cosmosphere
Kansas State Board of Education
Pando Initiative
Realtors of South Central Kansas
Spirit AeroSystems
The Trust Company of Kansas
UMB Bank
United Way of the Plains
WDM Architects
Weigand Real Estate
Wichita Community Foundation
Wichita Metro Chamber of Commerce
Workforce Alliance of South Central Kansas
Young Professionals of Wichita

Butler Community College
Friends University
Newman University
Tabor College
Wichita Area Technical College
Wichita State University

Andover Public Schools
Derby Public Schools
Goddard Public Schools
Wichita Public Schools