Vermont Lt. Gov. David Zuckerman joins a growing list of top educators, business leaders and policymakers scheduled to speak at the 2018 CFES Brilliant Pathways National Conference “Shaping Tomorrow’s Workforce Today” on Nov. 2-3 in Burlington, Vt.
Zuckerman, a longtime legislator, small business owner and organic farmer, joins featured speakers William “Mo” Cowen – one of only eight African Americans to serve in the US Senate – and Rene Godefroy who draws critical connections between growing up in abject poverty in Haiti and his in-depth study of neuroplasticity.
Zuckerman will serve on the “Building the Workforce of Tomorrow” panel on Nov. 2 at 8:45 a.m. at the Hilton Hotel led by Carolyn Slaski, EY (Ernst & Young) Americas Vice Chair of Talent and the first woman to be named partner at EY in New Jersey. She is also a member of the EY Gender Equity Task Force. The conference draws over 400 school superintendents, principals, teachers and other K-12 and college leaders from 30 states and Ireland.
“I am looking forward to hearing more about national workforce development solutions and sharing insight into how Vermont can educate and train young people to fill current and future jobs in our state,” said Zuckerman, who was elected Vermont’s 80th Lieutenant Governor in 2016.
As a longtime legislator and co-founder of Full Moon Farm – a NOFA-certified organic farm and CSA in Hinesburg – Zuckerman brings a wealth of experience to the conference. Inspired by Congressman Bernie Sanders, Zuckerman first ran for the Vermont House in 1994 while an undergraduate at the University of Vermont. He served for 14 years in the Vermont House of Representatives from Burlington and was elected to the Vermont Senate in 2012.
Brilliant Pathways in Vermont
Despite having one of the highest high school graduation rates in the country, only 60% of Vermont’s high school seniors enroll in a two- or four-year college or university.
Vermont leaders are joining a statewide initiative known as 70x2025vt, with a goal of having 70% of working-age Vermonters attain a postsecondary degree or credential of value by 2025. Achieving this benchmark is critical to closing the growing income disparity gap and addressing the estimated 132,000 high paying jobs in Vermont that are expected to go unfilled in the next decade due to a lack of educated and trained residents to fill them.
As daunting as that sounds, a recent UVM study found that if just six more students attended college from each of Vermont’s 75 high schools, the state would jump from the bottom 10 to the top 20 for college attendance. The same study identified educational organizations that are uniquely positioned to help Vermont improve its college attendance rate.
CFES Brillant Pathways has helped more than 100,000 students go to college over the last 27 years. As the only national non-profit of its kind located in a rural community (Essex, NY), CFES is well-positioned to help schools throughout Vermont ensure that students are college and career ready. Founded in Middlebury in 1991, CFES is currently working with 25,000 students in 150 schools in 30 states and Ireland and is seeking to work with a dozen schools in Vermont during the 2018-2019 school year.