orange county California community colleges business and entrepreneurship sector

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The Orange County California Community Colleges Business and Entrepreneurship Sector is dedicated to those interested in upskilling, reskilling, or refreshing their employability.

This community-based learning program is designed to address what has happened in 2020 and its long-term effects due to the devastating, widespread pandemic and–in moving forward–in elevating our awareness of and actions on equity, diversity, and inclusion, particularly in the context of the Call to Action by Chancellor Eloy Oakley, California Community College Office of the Chancellor (CCCCO). Besides, it’s just the right thing to do.

Preparing our community college students for the future of work is foundational for their success, for the business community at large, and to respond to an employment ecosystem that will not return to the old normal. Being creative, innovative, and emphasizing and providing the reality to gain these skills, is at the core of what we refer to as the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Quotient (EDIQ) process and student skills enhancement. The defining connection is between Employability and Entrepreneurship.

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INTRODUCTION

Addressing the current learning environment during 2021 and moving forward, the Orange County California Community Colleges (OC CCC) must continue being a leader by providing effective programs that promote equity for all (Chancellor Oakley). When considering how to proceed, equity, diversity, and inclusion has been and will continue to be woven into the fabric of programs and everyday actions.

Given the OC CCC’s initiatives and community involvement, a dedicated platform will lay the groundwork for the OC CCC’s Business and Entrepreneurship Sector to grow and provide additional specialized programs for the community that are not yet established. However, the main concentration here is for Employability and Entrepreneurship, which equips the OC CCC’s existing and future students for the workplace.

EMPLOYABILITY AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP: THE EDIQ PROGRAM

This is a pivotal time and opportunity to effect change in our society through launching the EDIQ program under the Business and Entrepreneurship Sector’s direction. It represents a self-imposed advocacy, a vital directive or “edict” (e.g. EDIQ). Providing a forum for current and prospective students allow them to continue moving toward their life and career goals while meeting mentors such as industry leaders and motivational speakers. This is a launching point that builds an unwavering foundation based on equity, inclusion, and diversity beliefs. These experiences, opportunities, and trainings promote skills required to be successful in our economy.

Why EDIQ?

The EDIQ (Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Quotient) is a new, innovative program, arising from the necessity of the CV19 era and incorporates the Emotional Intelligence Quotient (EIQ) (CCC Counselors Conference, 2019) concept. Emotional Intelligence addresses, in part, “the ability to communicate effectively, empathize with others, overcome challenges and defuse conflict” (https://www.helpguide.org). The term quotient is defined by Webster as, “a result obtained by dividing one quantity by another; a degree or amount of a specified quality or characteristic; or the magnitude of a specified characteristic or quality”.

Therefore, the Emotional Intelligence Quotient is that empathic quality that is magnified or amplified when working or interacting with others. This becomes the foundation of who we are and how we interact.

Taking it one step further by applying this foundational concept as the steppingstone for the EDIQ program extends this philosophy to the community in which we serve. The outcome of the OC (LA) CCC’s Employability and Entrepreneurship’s EDIQ program provides the next level of resources for the new workforce environment that paves the way for success for those in need of developing the necessary transferrable skills.