CEOs for Cities News

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Recommended reading for urban leaders

It's no longer summer, but recent book picks from Joe Cortright and Lee Fisher remain relevant. What about you, urban leader: Have you picked up Enrico Moretti's The New Geography of Jobs, Ed Glaeser's Triumph of the City, or the refresh of Richard Florida's seminal The Rise of the Creative Class?

Write Fisher and Cortright:

There's little question that the original generated a huge amount of debate and attention on the questions of cities and creativity, putting Florida at the center of many controversies. This edition revisits and updates the analysis from the original book, showing how many of the relationships from a decade ago -- such as the correlation between tolerance and technology -- persist or have grown stronger.
Much of the book is a response to critics, and while this may be Florida's effort to have the last word -- it won't be. Readers will find some points familiar and unchanged: despite broadening his case to include the creativity of all people, the book still retains his trademark term "class" to describe creative people. It is still possible to dispute some specifics, but Florida does deserve credit for signaling what he calls the bottom line: "cities need a people climate as much, and perhaps even more than they need a business climate."
Read the full list of recommendations here.

New brief on classroom-based best practices for first-generation students

Despite representing nearly a third of the national undergraduate populatio, first-generation college students are not always easy to identify on campus or in the community at large. Although there have been some efforts to target this population in the past, support for first-generation students generally has come through broader initiatives aimed at low-income or otherwise disadvantaged students. Recently, however, some higher education leaders have pushed to raise the profile of first-generation students through collective efforts geared toward greater postsecondary participation and success.
A new IHEP brief, Supporting First-Generation College Students Through Classroom-Based Practices, captures how 30 minority-serving institutions leveraged support from the Walmart Minority Student Success Initiative to develop a multipronged approach based on the idea that what takes place in the classroom is central to the college experience. The report shares exactly how the institutions integrated faculty members as principal agents to create a more engaging learning environment -- ultimately  promoting stronger performance academically and socially among first-generation students.

The brief also provides insights from the Walmart Minority Student Success Initiative participants on how to redesign instructional styles and course content, use data to develop and sustain programs, and secure community partnerships and support.

Download the brief here.

Gov. Deval Patrick sounds a call for investing in education

In welcoming remarks at the CEOs for Cities Fall National Meeting held in Boston Oct. 16-19, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick spoke about the importance of investing in education, research, and infrastructure, even during tough economic times: 
When we were hit by the global economic collapse, we cut public programs and thousands of state jobs. But, we also funded schools at the highest level in our history -- even when the bottom was falling out of the rest of the state budget. 
... Why do this during a recession? Because if you really believe in creating opportunity, you don’t tell a second grader she has to sit out the second grade until the recession is over. If you really believe in job growth, you don’t tell someone with a great idea for a new, transformative company that those jobs can wait until the amorphous market "feels" like hiring again. If you really believe in the American Dream, you don't leave it to chance.
Because of these investments, our unemployment rate is well below the national average, our innovation economy is on fire, our state's economy is growing twice as fast as the national growth rate, and we are first in the nation in student achievement -- in the top five in the world in math and science.
Read Governor Patrick's complete remarks here.

Education part of the conversation at Republican and Democratic Conventions

Political leaders and committed citizens alike discussed the role of education in America's future in both Tampa and Charlotte this past month. 

Focusing specifically on higher education issues, the Lumina Foundation hosted panel discussions about The College Advantage at both the Republican and Democratic National Conventions.

The Hechinger Report recaps the conversation in Charlotte, which focused on ways in which we can fix higher education.

From Campus Progress, a discussion about the importance of higher ed to rebuilding the middle class, reviving the economy and tackling student debt.

And StateImpact Florida summarizes the panel in Tampa, from which four tangible solutions emerged for improving higher education.

NoŽl Harmon: A rising tide lifts all boats

Noël Harmon, National Director of the Talent Dividend, writes for the Huffington Post about how and why educational attainment and the vitality of our country's cities are so intimately connected.

Start with your city to change the world, says Lee Fisher

We need to stop waiting for Washington, says Lee Fisher, CEO of CEOs for Cities, speaking at TEDxDes Moines. To change the world, start with your city instead. Large enough for you to make a broad impact, but small enough for you to make a deep impact, America's dynamic cities are huddles of innovation, intensity, and incubators of change. 

Watch the complete talk here.

Source: CEOs for Cities / TEDxDes Moines

Recap: Transforming Communities through Higher Education

Earlier this month, the Lumina Foundation in association with the Council on Foundations hosted a convening in Indianapolis titled Transforming Communities Through Higher Education. The goals of the meeting were to provide the opportunity for community foundation leaders to learn about trends, best practices and solution strategies for higher education attainment; take the first steps to building a community of practice among community foundations working to increase postsecondary attainment; and identify the leadership development resources community foundations need to build local agendas to increase postsecondary attainment. 

CEOs for Cities has a complete recap of the event, which included presentations by Jim Applegate, Lumina's VP for Program Development; Jeff Edmondson, Managing Director of the Strive Network; CEOs for Cities President and CEO Lee Fisher; Jamie Merisotis, President and CEO of the Lumina Foundation; Hadass Sheffer, Executive Director of Graduate! Philadelphia; Janice Brown, Executive Director of The Kalamazoo Learning Network; and Stephanie Powers, Managing Director of the Council on Foundations’ Public-Philanthropic Partnership Initiative.

Read more here.

Source: Catherine Bittar, CEOs for Cities 


The needle is moving on college attainment

In July, Arne Duncan, U.S. Secretary of Education, shared some exciting news with regard to America's postsecondary performance: The percentage of 25-34 year olds with some kind of postsecondary degree rose half a percentage point from 38.8 percent in 2009 to 39.3 percent in 2010.
While a half percentage-point increase may not seem like a substantial feat, CEOs for Cities research shows that small, tangible gains in college completion can have extremely large implications for the nation. Raising the national median of the top 51 metro areas from 29.4 percent to 30.4 percent, according to this research, would be associated with an increase in income of $124 billion per year for the nation. Thus, this half percentage-point increase in postsecondary degree achievement that Duncan recently spoke of has very exciting implications about national income levels and future city success.

Read more here.

Source: CEOs for Cities / U.S. Dept. of Education 
Writer: Catherine Bittar

Recap: National Talent Dividend Spring 2012 Meeting in Houston

The National Talent Dividend Spring 2012 Meeting was held April 2-3 at the Houston Post Oak in Houston, Texas.  Read more about the conversations that happened there. 

City Vitals 2.0 shares indicators of your city's success

City Vitals 2.0, a new report from CEOs for Cities, presents more than two dozen indicators in four key areas that measure the performance of the nation's 51 largest metro areas. 

Register now: CEOs for Cities Fall National Meeting

Join CEOs for Cities and a national network of urban leaders at the 2012 Fall National Meeting in Boston, October 15-17.

Workforce Investment Act reauthorization introduced in House

The Workforce Investment Act, enacted in 1998, is due for an update, according to the National League of Cities.
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