USC President C. L. Nikias welcomed Chancellor Francisco C. Rodriguez and the nine college presidents of the Los Angeles Community College District to the USC campus Sept. 4.
Nikias and Thomas Sayles, senior vice president for university relations, discussed student transfer retention with the consortium of leaders that runs the nation’s largest community college district.
“The transfer rate to USC is unmatched among the top 25 private research universities,” Nikias said. “USC matriculates 800 to 1,000 highly qualified community college graduates every year, many of whom are Cal Grant recipients.”
Biotech workforce development was also a key topic. USC, which has made substantial investments in the biosciences over the last five years, plans to develop a biotechnology park adjacent to its Health Sciences Campus.
The biotech park plan, which has gained support from key city and county partners, is expected to create as many as 3,000 new construction jobs and almost 4,000 permanent jobs — most of which will be accessible to members of the local community, as well as to medical and research professionals. It was noted that for every high-tech job created, four additional jobs are created in non-technical areas such as sales, marketing, administration and legal support.
“Consider us your educational partners,” Rodriguez said in relation to strategizing and developing an educational and workforce pipeline into the growing industry.
“The higher education community is working together for the greater good,” Sayles said.