Meet SPR at Meeting of the Minds

We’re excited to share our work and join the conversation at the California Workforce Association’s Meeting of the Minds: Driven by Demand on September 5-7, 2017.

For more information, please check out our sessions listed below:

Tuesday, Sept 5, 2017

10:00 – 11:30 Advancing Apprenticeships

San Carlos 2


Vinz Koller, Director of Training and Technical Assistance Social Policy Research Associates

Diane Walton, OSID Chief, ETA, Region 6, U.S. Department of Labor


Suzi LeVine, Former Ambassador to Switzerland & Liechtenstein

Eric LeVine, CEO, CellarTracker Selected Grantees, California Apprenticeship Initiative

The time to figure out how apprenticeship and other workplace learning strategies fit in your world is now!

This session will illustrate the bounty of apprenticeship and other workplace learning strategies, and provide you practice with some of the rewarding conversations ahead. What needs to happen to expand apprenticeships in this country, in this state, in your local area? How do you lay the groundwork that leads to successful partnerships? What role does pre-apprenticeship play? How do you attract the talent and get from where you are to where you want to be?

Suzi LeVine, former Ambassador to Switzerland & Liechtenstein, and her husband, Eric LeVine are on the forefront of the renaissance of the apprenticeship movement in this country. The success of the Swiss system, widely considered the global gold standard for career education programs, maintains a constant focus on delivering benefits to students, employers, and society.

Join Suzi and Eric LeVine, along with a selection of California Apprenticeship Initiative grantees, as they share best practices in both Switzerland and the United States for laying that groundwork and enlisting the key partners in business, academia, and government to get on board! It’s time for you to become part of the apprenticeship renaissance: Earn, learn & prosper!

Wednesday, Sept 6, 2017

1:15 – 2:15 Power Sessions III On-the-Job-Learning: Remaking Apprenticeship for the Modern Workforce

San Carlos 4

Nick Esquivel, Apprenticeship Coordinator California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office

Joshua Modlin, Project Director, Foundation for California Community Colleges

Leela Hebbar, Senior Associate, Social Policy Research Associates

The session will highlight how WIOA supports apprenticeship as a training strategy and as a partner in the workforce system. Presenters will explain the ways apprenticeships are supported by WIOA, how they can help job seekers, how they can be integrated into sector strategies, and other lessons learned from the California Apprenticeship Initiative (CAI). The CAI is an initiative of the California Community College Chancellor’s Office which is creating apprenticeships in new non-building trades occupations.

4:10 – 5:15 PLENARY PANEL Apprenticeship in America

San Carlos Ballroom 2, 3, 4

Eric M. Seleznow, Senior Advisor, Jobs for the Future Former Deputy Assistant Secretary, U. S. Department of Labor

Reimagining Apprenticeships


Vinz Koller, Director of Training and Technical Assistance Social Policy Research Associates Presenters

John Dunn, Special Consultant for Apprenticeships California Labor and Workforce Development Agency

Dr. Katherine Caves, Centre for Comparative Education Systems, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich, Switzerland

Doreen S. Moreno, Director, Government & Community Relations UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland

Edward DeJesus, National Director, Workforce Development Programs & Policy, Youth Advocate Programs, Inc.

John Brauer, Executive Director, California Labor Federation

Apprenticeships are experiencing a renaissance. No wonder. They blend classroom and work based learning, they cultivate the talent businesses need, and they offer people opportunities to build great careers. But if they are such a panacea, why do they have such a stodgy image? Why do they seem so old- 23 school — and hard to work with? What if we thought about them differently and built a new ecosystem to support them? Each of our panelists brings a unique perspective to California’s effort to make full use of the ‘Apprenticeship Advantage’. Come reimagine with us what the future of apprenticeship could be, and how we could be a part of making it happen

Thursday, Sept 7, 2017

10:30 – 11:30 Power Sessions V Regional Strategic Planning in Different Contexts: Moving From Rote Planning To True Strategic Work Of Regional Significance

San Carlos 4


Jessie Oettinger, Senior Associate, Social Policy Research Associates


Monique Melchor, Director, work2future, City of San Jose Andy Hall, VP & Chief Program Officer, San Diego Workforce Partnership

Stephen Baiter, Executive Director, Oakland Workforce Development Board

Racy Ming, North Bay Employment Connection Consultant, Racy Ming Associates

All Regional Planning Units (RPUs) in California submitted their first WIOA regional strategic plans in 2017, but many workforce boards and their partners have been moving towards a regional approach for several years now. This panel will explore the state of regional planning efforts in four regions.