WATERTOWN, S.D. — Lake Area Technical Institute has been highlighted as one of six community colleges across the nation in The Workforce Playbook, which was released Tuesday, June 11 by the Aspen Institute College Excellence Program.

In addressing the national workforce skills gap, the publication outlines LATI’s best practices for developing highly effective workforce programs. In addition, the Playbook details the South Dakota’s Build Dakota Scholarship program and strong industry partnerships facilitated through cooperative efforts with the Governors’ Office of Economic Development and the Department of Labor and Regulations.

“South Dakota is honored to be a leader in addressing the nation’s skills gap,” said South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem. “We are deeply invested in creating greater opportunity for our people, communities, and employers. Our approach to technical education merges economic development, labor market needs, and education, and we hope this playbook offers helpful insights for others. I am incredibly proud of Lake Area Tech and their work to serve students and industry.”

The Workforce Playbook was developed as a tool to help other community colleges bridge the opportunity gap. It is a practical guide with the goal of improving other colleges’ ability to deliver talent for communities and enable social mobility for students. The Playbook acknowledges LATI’s success in developing strong industry partnerships, robust connections to workforce development and student success.

“Lake Area Tech does an outstanding job preparing students to fulfill workforce demands through its industry facing efforts. Aspen’s playbook justifiably holds up the Build Dakota program as a model for other states,” South Dakota Board of Technical Education Chair Dana Dykhouse said. “Rightly so, as we have seen a huge impact in just the first five years of the program in South Dakota.”