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RIDE Selects PrepareRI Ambassadors

Inaugural Cohort Will Improve Career Preparation Programs


PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) today announced the selection of six PrepareRI Ambassadors, education leaders from around the state who will examine career preparation programs in Rhode Island and make recommendations to improve those systems. Beginning in July 2017, the Ambassadors will spend one year leading professional development opportunities, working alongside industry partners to better connect classrooms to careers, and developing policy recommendations that will enhance and expand career education.

Launched under the leadership of Governor Gina Raimondo, in conjunction with RIDE, the Governor’s Workforce Board, and the Department of Labor and Training (DLT), PrepareRI is an initiative to improve career and college readiness of all Rhode Island students, ensuring every graduate has the skills needed to be successful in the 21st century economy.

“We know that by the year 2020, 70 percent of jobs in Rhode Island will require some form of postsecondary education or training, yet only 45 percent of Rhode Islanders currently meet that benchmark,” said Governor Gina M. Raimondo. “We need to close that skills gap, and PrepareRI is critical to building robust and responsive career preparation programs that will empower our kids with skills that matter for the jobs that pay.”

“To provide well-rounded, equitable education opportunities, we need to provide advanced, challenging coursework to all students, and also offer career education to all students,” said Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education Ken Wagner. “Our PrepareRI Ambassadors, who are leaders in their field, are charged with identifying best practices and assembling resources so that all schools and all educators have the support they need to blend academic readiness with in-demand job skills.”

The inaugural cohort of PrepareRI Ambassadors is made up of:

  • Lynne Bedard, PhD., school-based CTE coordinator for Ponaganset High School
  • Elizabeth Dwyer, mathematics instructor at the Rhode Island Nurses Institute Middle College
  • Christianne Fisher, assistant principal for teaching and learning at Rogers High School
  • Stacy Haines-Mayne, head of school counseling, Chariho Regional School District
  • Anais Hazard, special educator at North Cumberland Middle School
  • Elizabeth Sinwell, director of curriculum, instruction, and assessment at Foster-Glocester Regional School District

Rhode Island is one of only 10 states nationally awarded a New Skills for Youth (NSFY) grant to support this work. This $2 million grant from JPMorgan Chase, in collaboration with the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and Advance CTE, aims to tackle Rhode Island’s skills gap so that all young people have an understanding of and are prepared for the high-wage, high-growth career opportunities of the future.

For more information on PrepareRI and college and career readiness, go to the PrepareRI FAQ page.

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