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Pharmacy technician separating pills
Shane Aoyagi completed a Pharm Tech course at UH Maui College and is now working at CVS Longs

Since the start of the year, efforts by the University of Hawaiʻi Community Colleges to get residents on a career pathway have resulted in nearly 600 enrolled for free employment training. Of those, 165 are from the Good Jobs Hawaiʻi workforce collaborative training initiative with 70% of them focused on healthcare opportunities.

The UH Community Colleges, Chamber of Commerce Hawaiʻi and industry partners launched Good Jobs Hawaiʻi on January 30, 2023. For the last three months, the Good Jobs Hawaiʻi coalition has traveled around the state to raise awareness among employers and create opportunities for future jobs.

“Employers in Hawaiʻi know they can no longer just be consumers of talent, they must become co-creators of talent,” said Keala Peters, Chamber of Commerce Hawaiʻi. “Sector partners are committing time to work alongside their industry colleagues in Sector Partnerships. They are providing work-based learning in our schools, including offering paid internships, and putting real skin in the game to grow their own talent pipeline and connect Hawaiʻi’s young people to good jobs and family-sustaining careers.”

Through the Good Jobs Hawaiʻi initiative, the UH Community Colleges offer free skills training in high-demand industries: healthcare, technology, clean energy/skilled trades and creative services. Employers from these industries work with the UH Community Colleges to identify positions that need to be filled. The seven UH Community College campuses provide the training and support that allow individuals to access pathways to advance into these in-demand jobs.

“Our goal is to equip residents with the knowledge and skills to access pathways to good jobs that allow them to thrive in Hawaiʻi,” said Daniel Doerger, director of workforce innovation, UH Community Colleges.

Large group of smiling people
Good Jobs HI partnership meeting at Kauaʻi CC in March

Employers statewide are invited to join the Good Jobs Coalition by signing the Talent Pledge to support Good Jobs’ action steps to develop a skilled, local talent pipeline. Additionally, industry partners in healthcare, technology, skilled trades/clean energy and creative industries are encouraged to join a Sector Partnership to help grow their industries’ talent pipeline.

The UH Community Colleges successfully competed for a variety of federal workforce training grants, and Good Jobs Hawaiʻi is the umbrella initiative that makes it easier for students, employers and community members to understand and access opportunities. By leveraging those various federal, state, county and philanthropic resources, the initiative covers the cost for training and other support for participants.

“We hope that high school graduates who are unsure about what higher education route to take will look into the opportunities offered by Good Jobs Hawaiʻi,” said Doerger. “We remind anyone who is looking to start or continue a career path to apply for training in one of these high-demand sectors.”

The UH Community Colleges are adding new courses for the summer months with even more planned for fall. Interested participants can learn more at

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