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The world of work is changing and constantly evolving — the workforce needs of today are different than the needs of tomorrow. Education Drives Our Greater Economy (EDGE) is designed to cultivate cradle-through-career education and training to ensure 75 percent of Greater Des Moines (DSM) working-age adults have degrees, certificates and other credentials by 2025.

A Pledge to the Future

A partnered study from Dell Technologies and the Institute for the Future (IFTF) estimates that 85% of the jobs that will exist in 2030 haven’t been invented yet, and 65% of children starting school today will one day hold jobs that do not yet exist. There is a critical need for a skilled workforce, yet the supply of talent and demand for specific skills do not currently correlate. EDGE is DSM’s answer to future-proofing the region. By redefining the wheel with cutting-edge opportunities, the region will continue to be a top place in the U.S. to live, work and do business by major publications like Forbes.

Sign the Pledge

Coming together to close the academic achievement gap and the skills gap is essential to supporting and sustaining the talent potential of the region. By pledging to EDGE, your company is undergoing an oath to pioneer the future and to rise to meet the everchanging talent needs of tomorrow. Download a list of the DSM companies that have pledged to EDGE and pledge your support today.

Talent Graph

Take Action

By empowering DSM’s talent pool to gain new skills through innovative opportunities, EDGE continues to make strides toward an evolving future. This vision is achieved through the support from private, public and nonprofit leaders aiming to redefine the modern workplace.

As An Employer

  • Identify — As a leader in DSM, it is your duty to identify the employees that have yet to gain postsecondary experience and help them get on track to meet the demands on the horizon.
  • Train/Educate — Take the initiative to educate your employees on the evolving industries and provide tuition support for them to receive advanced trainings to meet changing needs. You will gain a loyal and impactful employee and they will develop the professional skills needed to elevate your organization to new heights.
  • Mentor — Plant the seed today to harvest tomorrow. Seek out opportunities for employees to participate in certified mentorship programs, create job shadowing for young adults or expand access to internships and apprenticeships. This exposure to work-based learning and professional networks gained through these experiences are valuable to preparing the future workforce.
  • Partner — Start preparing future talent as early as possible. By collaborating with K-12 schools, tomorrow’s leaders gain the headstart they need. Carrying this partnership through higher education institutions allow us to tackle the challenges of the coming workforce needs.
  • Engage — Now, more than ever, is there a need to raise awareness and take action. Hold employers accountable to engage with the community, students and educators by voicing the importance of adapting to the future.

As An Educator

  • Achieve — As the direct mentor to students, educators have the responsibility to make an immediate impact. Take pride in the commitment to prepare students for the next level by ensuring a high-quality teaching and learning in classrooms, and understand the emerging workforce needs to lead the development of the desired skills of the future. Doing so will fulfill the obligation to better the lives of students by handing them the toolkit for success.
  • Collaborate — Strong leadership on all fronts is crucial to developing world-class talent. All school stakeholders, including administrators, teachers, staff, parents and students, must come together.
  • Expand Innovation — DSM is a global leader in innovation, with many schools and programs leading by example. It is imperative to further this reputation by seeking opportunities to expand innovation and represent DSM’s education system to the highest degree.
  • Improve Accountability — To accomplish the EDGE vision, all education and workforce stakeholders must be held to new, transparent levels of responsibility for student success. From school readiness to high school completion to postsecondary experiences and employment, the stakes have been raised and we hold each other accountable to meet them.
  • Build "One Voice" — It’s time to be heard. Elevate the education system by advocating under “One Voice” at the state and federal level to draw attention to policy funding and issues impacting the young leaders in the region.
  • Provide Pathways — Creating opportunities across industries is critical to preparing for the evolving workforce. Collaborate with industry leaders in the community to develop internships, externships and mentoring opportunities that will shape the future of talent development.
  • Deliver Results — Collect complete data about workforce outcomes and leadership actions, and alter your plan if performance is not up-to-par.

Sign Up To Pledge

Fill out the online form to pledge your support for ensuring a strong, talented and educated workforce in DSM!

Thank You

Thank you to the following organizations and companies who have pledged to EDGE:

  • America's Cultivation Corridor
  • Aureon
  • Bankers Trust
  • Brick Gentry P.C.
  • City of Van Meter
  • Drake University
  • Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC)
  • DMACC Ankeny Campus
  • DMACC Newton Campus
  • DMACC at Perry VanKirk Career Academy
  • DMACC Urban/Des Moines Campus
  • DMACC West Campus
  • Des Moines Area Metropolitan Planning Organization
  • Des Moines Area Regional Transit Authority
  • Des Moines Public Schools
  • EMC Insurance Companies
  • Evelyn K. Davis Center for Working Families (DMACC)
  • Heartland Area Education Agency 11
  • Hubbell Realty Company
  • Iowa Student Loan
  • ITA Group, Inc.
  • Junior Achievement of Central Iowa
  • Master Builders of Iowa
  • Mercy College of Health Sciences
  • MidAmerican Energy Company
  • Nationwide
  • NCMIC Group, Inc.
  • Norwalk Community Schools
  • Pokorny Consulting
  • Prairie Meadows
  • Principal
  • Rock In Prevention, Inc.
  • Saxton Inc.
  • SHAZAM Inc.
  • Strategic America
  • Student Voice
  • Tero International, Inc.
  • TigerLily STEM
  • United Way of Central Iowa
  • UnityPoint Health – Des Moines
  • Van Meter Schools
  • Voya Financial
  • Waukee Community School District
  • Wellmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Iowa 
  • Wells Fargo
  • West Des Moines Community Schools