Talent Talk: January 2020
21st Century Talent Regions: A Year in Review
Over the past year, it has been incredible to see the the tremendous growth and opportunity Indiana communities have experienced as a result of collaboration between local-, regional- and state-level leaders throughout Indiana.
In 2019, the Indiana Office of Career Connections and Talent, with support from the Indiana Economic Development
Corporation and technical assistance from CivicLab, designated a total of four 21st Century Talent Regions – Northeast Indiana, EcO Network of Southeast Indiana, Indiana Uplands and Hamilton County.
Northeast Indiana - June 2019
Indiana’s first 21st Century Talent Region was named on June 20, 2019 at the Regional Chamber of Northeast Indiana’s annual meeting. During the meeting, local leaders were presented with their official 21st Century Talent Region designation. The 11-county region encompasses Adams, Allen, DeKalb, Huntington, Kosciusko, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, Wabash, Wells and Whitley counties.
“Workforce is the critical issue of our time, and teamwork is essential to ensuring Hoosiers are skilled and ready. By bringing everyone to the table with the 21st Century Talent Region designation, local leaders will create a plan intentionally designed around the strengths of their communities.” - Governor Eric J. Holcomb
Spearheaded by the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership, the region identified key priorities through the 21st Century Talent Region initiative, including:
- Developing similar collaborative relationships within the region;
- Encouraging implementation and adjustment of initiatives to meet the goal of growing the region’s population to 1 million residents by 2031;
- Increasing post-secondary education and credential attainment to more than 60 percent; and
- Raising per capita personal income to 90 percent against the national average by 2030.
EcO Network of Southeast Indiana - August 2019
EcO Network of Southeast Indiana became the state’s second 21st Century Talent Region during an event at Columbus City Hall on August 2, 2019. Columbus Mayor James Lienhoop, Seymour Mayor Craig Luedeman and representatives from the EcO Network were collectively presented with the official 21st Century Talent Region designation. The EcO Network of Southeast Indiana represents Batesville, Columbus, Greensburg, North Vernon, Rising Sun and Seymour.
“Ensuring a sustainable pipeline of talent to support our region’s critical industry sectors requires a systems approach to cross-sector collaboration that links the learning system with economic opportunity in the places we call home in southeast Indiana. Our region has established a long history of effective collaboration, and we are excited to continue this collaborative work through shared strategies to attract, develop and connect talent in our region.” - Executive Director of Community Education Coalition Kathy Oren
Spearheaded by the Columbus Area Economic Growth Council (CAEGC), the region identified key priorities
through the 21st Century Talent Region initiative, including:
- Completing goal setting for regional talent attraction and connection numbers by the end of 2019;
- Building out talent dashboards for at least all partner communities by the end of 2019; and
- Identifying the shared talent attraction, development, and connection strategies around which the region can build communities of practice in southeast Indiana.
Indiana Uplands - November 2019
Indiana Uplands joined Northeast Indiana and EcO Network of Southeast Indiana as a 21st Century Talent Region on November 18, 2019. During the event, Tina Peterson, President and CEO of Regional Opportunity Initiatives, Inc. (ROI), and regional partners were presented with the official 21st Century Talent Region designation. The Indiana Uplands is an 11-county area encompassing Brown, Crawford, Daviess, Dubois, Greene, Lawrence, Martin, Monroe, Orange, Owen and Washington counties.
"Over the past four years, we have cultivated meaningful partnerships and collaborated thoughtfully to align our communities, our key industry sectors and our educational assets. Being recognized as a 21st Century Talent Region is acknowledgement of the shared commitment we've made to regionalism and advancing economic and community prosperity in the Indiana Uplands. Like our hills and forests that reach to the heights, the Indiana Uplands is a region on the rise, and we are excited to continue this momentum to make it an even better place to learn, live, work and play.” - President and CEO of ROI Tina Peterson
Spearheaded by ROI, the region identified key priorities through the 21st Century Talent Region
- ROI will establish and maintain a regional dashboard intended to serve all partners across the region to deepen consistent regional collaboration through shared goals and operating practices;
- The Indiana Uplands will establish and advance short and long-term goals for achieving a 10 percent increase in the number of citizens with a post-secondary credential by 2025; and
- The region will adopt an equity focus with the intention of narrowing the achievement gap for disadvantaged and/or minority populations that are underserved across the region.
Hamilton County - December 2019
The end of the year was rounded out with the 21st Century Talent Region designation of Hamilton County on December 5, 2019. During the event, Carol Sergi, Director of Workforce Strategy for Hamilton County Economic Development Corporation, and regional partners were presented with the official 21st Century Talent Region designation.
“The Hamilton County Board of Commissioners understands the importance of workforce development. Attracting and retaining qualified talent in our county continues to be a challenge with a competitive market. This prompted the Commissioners to perform a strategic study to understand Hamilton County’s specific workforce opportunities. This year-long effort of collaboration with all four Hamilton County cities – Carmel, Westfield, Noblesville and Fishers – as well as the county will help us in developing a creative workforce initiative to assist our employers but also spur continued economic development.” - Hamilton County Commissioner Mark Heirbrandt
Spearheaded by Hamilton County Economic Development Corporation, the region identified key priorities
through the 21st Century Talent Region initiative, including:
- Increase employer engagement with the education and workforce system to be measured by the number of internship or apprenticeship opportunities available to youth and adults;
- Increase on-time graduation rates for individuals pursuing post-secondary credentials;
- Create a review method for supporting students after high school graduation to remove barriers keeping them from achieving a post-secondary credential; and
- Identify and pursue opportunities to collaborate with neighboring counties on shared goals to attract, develop and connect talent.