Skip to main content.

WITC faculty member attends NC3 Summit

Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College instructor Frank Vidas attended and learned from a National Coalition of Certification Centers NC3 summit.

(9/15/14): Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College instructor Frank Vidas was one of the more than 125 education and business leaders from across the United States who attended and learned from a National Coalition of Certification Centers NC3 summit. Held at Gateway Technical College’s Kenosha, Wisconsin, campus, this event provided insight into a national priority calling for industry-driven credentials. Vidas teaches WITC’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning/refrigeration program at the Superior campus.

Vidas also was part of the best practices discussion among colleges, which have integrated these certifications into their curriculum, as a better means to equip students from WITC to enter today’s marketplace.

“The future of technical education is upon us, and it was born right here in the great state of Wisconsin,” Vidas says. “The NC3 concept of bringing together industry with higher education is not a new idea. We as educators have known for quite some time that we need input from industry at the highest of levels. NC3 built that pathway between industry, higher education, and third-party consultants. WITC students have benefited already from our involvement with NC3 in utilizing the third-party certifications, and will continue to do so into the future.”

NC3 is a network of education providers and corporations that supports, advances and validates new and emerging technology skills in the transportation, aviation and energy industry sectors.

Colleges at the event benefit as their leaders learned and shared best practices on how to integrate industry-driven credentials into academic programs.

“Students benefit because they are more marketable if they have an industry credential in addition to a college certificate, diploma or degree. It gives them an advantage in the hiring process,” says Debbie Davidson, NC3 director of development and Gateway vice president, Workforce and Economic Development Division.

“Businesses benefit because the job applicants with these credentials have a third-party validation of their skills to undergird their college degree and letter grade.”

The event featured workshops, tours of college facilities and presentations from such leaders as Wisconsin Secretary of Workforce Development Reggie Newson, the American Association of Community Colleges “21st Century Report” author and researcher Walter Bumphus, Wisconsin Technical College System President Morna Foy as well as John Colborn, CEO for Skills for America’s Future.

About NC3: The National Coalition of Certification Centers (NC3) was established to address the need for strong industry partnerships with educational institutions in order to develop, implement and sustain industry-recognized portable certifications that have strong validation and assessment standards.