In June 2014, Savannah was awarded a grant from the LUMINA Foundation to help Chatham County reach a larger percentage of technical school and college graduates. From this, Savannah Graduates was created. Savannah Graduates is focused on improving outcomes by leveraging existing resources, and by implementing a comprehensive community plan. Leaders from partner organizations including Armstrong State University, Chatham County, City of Savannah, Coastal Workforce Services, Coastal Georgia Indicators Coalition, Georgia Power, Gulfstream Aerospace, Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce, Savannah-Chatham County Public School System, Savannah Economic Development Authority, Savannah State University, Savannah Technical College, Step Up Savannah, and the United Way of the Coastal Empire, established an Executive Council and a steering committee to formally establish a partnership that is focused on increasing post-secondary completion and workforce development in Savannah-Chatham County.
The partnership’s overarching goal is to increase completion by obtaining an additional 16,000 professional credentials and degrees, totaling 85,000 degrees in Savannah-Chatham County by 2025. This will be done through a variety of outlets from increased internship opportunities to Savannah Graduates serving as a resource for workforce and educational programs already in place.
This initiative was officially unveiled to the Savannah-Chatham community on the morning of Friday, Feb. 6 at the Armstrong Center to more than 120 community and business leaders. A charter agreement was signed by the partner organizations, serving as a symbol of each one’s promise to ensure Savannah Graduates and the community exceeds its goal.