WAFCFor more than a decade, Corporate Voices has provided leading best-practice employers a forum to improve the lives of working families, while strengthening our nation’s economy.  Many employers accomplish this by supporting the educational attainment of current and future employees.  In order to ensure that individuals have the skills to succeed in the workplace and are on education and career pathways to earning family sustaining wages, employers often partner with community colleges in Learn and Earn models of talent development.

Each week, in an effort to highlight these best practice models, Corporate Voices will spotlight a distinct Learn and Earn partnership between a business and community college. This week, we are pleased to highlight the Western Association of Food Chains (WAFC).

The sole mission of WAFC, an organization representing companies in the retail and wholesale food industry, is to build education depth throughout the food industry.  Through its Retail Management Certificate Program, WAFC has partnered with more than 135 community colleges to utilize standard academic course work offered by most community colleges to create an industry recognized certificate.  As budget cuts force these community colleges to evaluate resource allocations and expenditures, their food industry partners offer onsite classroom usage within their facilities, supplementing valuable on-campus space.  Additionally, employer partners provide adjunct instructors steeped in current learning needs of the industry.

For more information on WAFC, please read the Learn and Earn micro-business case, or check Corporate Voices’ most recent tool, Business and Community College Partnerships: A Blueprint.