DISCOVERY COMMUNICATIONS EXPANDS COMMITMENT TO AMERICAN JOB GROWTH AND JOB SKILLS DEVELOPMENT
– Partnering with Montgomery College on job skills program for students in Maryland –
– Discovery Education to launch new community college service to deliver high-quality digital content –
SILVER SPRING, Md., Aug. 23, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Discovery Communications today announced the expansion of its ‘Discover Your Skills’ public affairs job skills program, including a partnership with Montgomery College focused on better preparing students with the necessary skills to take advantage of available job opportunities, and the airing of eight public service announcements (PSAs) across its U.S. networks and digital platforms highlighting career opportunities in the skilled trades, and the importance of training workers to fill critical jobs in manufacturing, health care, energy, technology, construction and other industries.
Also today, Discovery announced that its Discovery Education division will introduce a community college service for the 2012-2013 academic year. Leveraging Discovery Education’s position as the leading provider of digital content to U.S. K-12 schools, the new service will provide curriculum-based content to support post-secondary institutions and prepare students with the skills necessary to compete in today’s job market.
The partnership with Montgomery College will include internships, guest lecturers, resume development and other programs designed to prepare students with marketable job skills.
The new initiatives and three of the PSAs were unveiled today at Montgomery College in Silver Spring, Md., by Discovery President and CEO David Zaslav, Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, Montgomery College President DeRionne P. Pollard, Ph.D., U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, Maryland Labor Secretary Alexander M. Sanchez, Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett and Penny Pritzker, Advisory Board Chair, Skills for America’s Future, The Aspen Institute.
“If we want to compete, win, and prosper in the global economy, then we must be leaders in the ways we advance and strengthen the skills and education of our people,” said Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley. “Growing our economy takes more than just attracting business and creating jobs, it also requires equipping those businesses and filling those jobs with a world-class Maryland workforce. We are pleased to partner with Discovery Communications to help provide more of our people with the education and skills to be successful.”
“Addressing the growing gap between the needs of employers and the skills of America’s workforce is a critical issue for the country’s success, and a key to lowering unemployment and boosting the economy on both the local and national level,” said David Zaslav, President and CEO of Discovery Communications. “We are proud to be launching Discovery Education’s community college service that will target the critical training needed for citizens to get the skills necessary to find employment opportunities, and by partnering with Montgomery College, we are helping the local communities where Discovery operates to give students marketable skills that will provide greater access to job opportunities."
“We are proud to partner with Discovery to provide our students with greater access to career opportunities that will prepare them for success in today’s competitive global economy,” said Dr. DeRionne P. Pollard, President of Montgomery College. “At Montgomery College, we recognize that higher education benefits both the individual and the broader community, and we are working to increase degree completion by nearly two-thirds by 2025. With support from Discovery and other business partners, our graduates will contribute to the future economic growth of Montgomery County and the state of Maryland.”
‘Discover Your Skills’ is a multimedia public affairs campaign designed to provide unemployed and underemployed Americans with access to critical resources for obtaining marketable job skills and expertise, and to raise awareness of career opportunities. It includes www.DiscoverYourSkills.com, an online resource providing links and information to help educate, prepare and advance entry to the workforce.
As part of ‘Discover Your Skills,’ Discovery is partnering with Skills for America’s Future, a non-partisan partnership of businesses and community colleges, announced by President Obama, with a mission to address the dual problems of unemployment and the difficulty many employers face in finding workers with the right skills. Discovery President and CEO David Zaslav is a member of the Advisory Board of Skills for America’s Future. Skills for America’s Future, U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Labor collaborated with Discovery on the development of DiscoverYourSkills.com.
“Community colleges and workforce partners are absolutely essential to helping Americans gain the skills to obtain and keep good jobs,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. “We all have to work together to educate our way to a better economy, and partnerships like these can give Americans the tools they need to have more opportunities in today’s global marketplace.”
“I’m excited to see a company with the strong reputation and reach of Discovery making this type of commitment to connecting the public to training and career opportunities in skilled trades,” said U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. “The Labor Department offers many free programs and tools to help expand opportunities and get America back to work, and it is fantastic to see them highlighted as a central component of this effort.”
“The most effective economic development investment we can make today is an investment in tomorrow’s skills,” said Maryland Labor Secretary Alexander M. Sanchez. “Our Skills2Compete initiative has helped us build a trained workforce to compete in the New Economy. I commend Discovery Communications for standing up and being a corporate leader in the effort to build the skills for America’s future.”
“I commend Montgomery College and Discovery Communications on the foresight behind this partnership that has the potential to affect the futures of many local employers and employees,” said Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett. “Good preparation is vital to the success of any endeavor, mission, project or job. The value of the partnership lies in the fact that it will help ensure that students with certain job skills are sufficiently prepared to use those skills to benefit themselves, their employers and, in turn, the economy.”
“Through raising awareness about career opportunities and working hand-in-hand with community colleges, Discovery Communications has shown a true commitment to helping Americans obtain the skills they need,” said Penny Pritzker, Advisory Board Chair, Skills for America’s Future, The Aspen Institute. “This collaboration between Discovery Communications and Skills for America’s Future will help America’s workers and businesses succeed.”
Content for Discovery Education’s community college service is being developed in collaboration with the Higher Education Research & Development Institute (HERDI) and its advisory board of community college presidents to ensure that it is current, accurate and relevant for both instructors and students. Discovery Education also will work with like-minded companies to develop additional resources that will be available at no additional cost.
“Discovery Education is committed to working with community college systems across the country to develop a service and provide ongoing support specifically designed to meet their needs,” said Bill Goodwyn, CEO of Discovery Education. “As the leading provider of digital educational content to U.S. schools, we will leverage our expertise to deliver the highest quality content for adult learners regardless of how they best learn or where they are in the learning process.”
The eight ‘Discover Your Skills’ PSAs feature Discovery on-air talent including Mike Rowe of Discovery Channel’s DIRTY JOBS WITH MIKE ROWE, Buddy Valastro of TLC’s CAKE BOSS and Jeannette Torres from Discovery Familia. The PSAs unveiled today can be viewed online at www.DiscoverYourSkills.com and http://impact.discovery.com. The PSAs will begin airing across Discovery’s U.S. networks on August 29.
‘Discover Your Skills’ is part of Discovery Impact, which leverages the power of Discovery’s brands, businesses and employees to give back and make a direct impact on the communities in which we live and work.
About Discovery Education
Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) revolutionized television with Discovery Channel and is now transforming classrooms through Discovery Education. Powered by the number one nonfiction media company in the world, Discovery Education combines scientifically proven, standards-based digital media and a dynamic user community in order to empower teachers to improve student achievement. Already, more than half of all U.S. schools access Discovery Education digital services. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.
About Discovery Impact
Through its Discovery Impact programs, Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) leverages the power of its brands, businesses and employees to give back to the world. From programming that inspires and educates to annual events that make a direct impact on the communities in which we live and work, Discovery strives to celebrate, support and sustain the majesty of the earth’s people, animals and natural beauty. For more information about how Discovery is making an impact, please visit: http://impact.discovery.com.
About Discovery Communications
Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) is the world’s #1 nonfiction media company reaching more than 1.5 billion cumulative subscribers in 210 countries and territories. Discovery is dedicated to satisfying curiosity through 139 worldwide television networks, led by Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Science and Investigation Discovery, as well as U.S. joint venture networks OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, The Hub and 3net, the first 24-hour 3D network. Discovery also is a leading provider of educational products and services to schools and owns and operates a diversified portfolio of digital media services, including HowStuffWorks.com. For more information, please visit www.discoverycommunications.com.