New educational partnership to benefit City of Toledo residents

Press Staff Writer

        Leaders from Owens Community College, the University of Toledo and Toledo Public Schools signed a letter of intent on Feb. 27 opening doors for educational opportunities for City of Toledo residents at Scott Park.
        In front of a large crowd at the Center for Fine and Performing Arts, Owens announced the results of the year-long feasibility study assessing the need for a physical Owens presence in the City of Toledo.
        Conducted by Trellis Strategies, the study summarized these findings:
        • A need for a physical presence in the City of Toledo.
        • Increased partnerships are necessary to prepare tomorrow’s workforce.
        • Large education attainment gaps exist in the city of Toledo.
        “Our goal is to increase access to high quality educational opportunities in the City of Toledo that benefit the Northwest Ohio region,” Owens President Dr. Dione D. Somerville said. “With partners at Scott Park, we can build a foundation to address the needs for today’s students and workforce development.”
        Bryan Ashton, of Trellis Strategies presented the feasibility study research summary, which identified nearly 190,000 people aged 25 or older in key parts of the City of Toledo with only a high school degree or some college. Nearly 75 percent of the city’s residents who are high school graduates did not enroll in college at graduation. Today that translates to more than half of the City of Toledo’s residents age 25-plus, or 55 percent, being college-ready.
        “The University of Toledo is proud to strengthen our long-standing partnerships with Owens Community College and Toledo Public Schools in our shared commitment to ensuring all members of our community have an opportunity to achieve their educational and career goals,” said University of Toledo President Gregory Postel. “By working together, we can help close the educational attainment gap in Toledo to celebrate both individual successes of earning a college degree and also the community benefit of strengthening the workforce and economic prosperity of our region.”
        “This new initiative with Owens Community College and the University of Toledo allows TPS to continue providing new and exciting educational opportunities for our students,” said Dr. Romules Durant, CEO/Superintendent of Toledo Public Schools. “We are excited that the future of the Scott Park Campus includes not only TPS students but adult learners who are ready to expand their education as they plan for their future.”
        With the completed letter of intent signing, the educational leaders will now collaborate on what programming will be offered at Scott Park as well as a start date. No timeline has been established.
        Kristi Clouse, JobsOhio, senior managing director, talent and Rosalyn Clemens, City of Toledo, housing and community development director, also participated in the announcement. JobsOhio shared with Trellis Strategies its research related to workforce development for the advanced manufacturing sector in Northwest Ohio. The City of Toledo provided financial support for the study.
        Trellis Strategies is a non-profit, Texas-based higher education research firm with expertise in program evaluation and workforce outcomes and identifying transportation barriers and enrollment deserts.
        “We are thankful for the support and partnerships we have with the University of Toledo, Toledo Public Schools, the City of Toledo, JobsOhio and Trellis Strategies,” Somerville said. “We look forward to fulfilling our mission and providing quality higher education access at Scott Park.”
        Details about the feasibility study and the Scott Park location will be updated at


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