Contact: Karla Roth-Bardinas
Think Media Communications
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For Immediate Release
NJCCC President Aaron Fichtner and Vice President Catherine Frugé Starghill Named to NJBIZ Education Power 50 List
November 1, 2022, Trenton, NJ – The New Jersey Council of County Colleges (NJCCC) is proud to announce that its President, Aaron Fichtner, PhD., and its Vice President of Strategy and Partnerships and the Executive Director of the New Jersey Community College Consortium of Workforce and Economic Development, Catherine Frugé Starghill, Esq., have been named to the 2022 NJBIZ Education Power 50 List.
In a recent article in NJBIZ, Jeffrey Kanige wrote, “The COVID-19 pandemic interrupted learning across the spectrum – from primary and secondary schools to institutions of higher education. The combination of increased necessity with worsening logistics has created a unique set of challenges for educators at every level. The individuals listed here have proven themselves to be ready for those challenges.” Others on the 2022 Education Power 50 List include: President of Rutgers University Jonathan Holloway, President of Princeton University Christopher Eisgruber, and President of Rowan University Ali Houshmand.
Aaron and Catherine are thought leaders in education in New Jersey and the nation. Together in their leadership roles at NJCCC, they spearheaded the New Jersey Pathways to Career Opportunities Initiative which brings together industry and education partners to form an education ecosystem that is connected statewide and is guided by industry leaders to build an innovative workforce in the Garden State. This cutting-edge initiative now has more than 1,200 industry and education partners statewide helping to propel New Jersey’s economy to new heights through a partnership with The New Jersey Business & Industry Association (NJBIA).
“We are proud that New Jersey Community Colleges are a catalyst for progress and change in the Garden State to strengthen our workforce. The synergy we have established with thousands of partners around the state is nothing shy of transformational. We are grateful to NJBIZ for recognizing us and our work in this year’s Education Power 50 in New Jersey,” said Fichtner.
Prior to becoming President of NJCCC in 2018, Fichtner served as the Commissioner of New Jersey’s Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJDOL), where he had previously served as the Department's Deputy Commissioner and the Assistant Commissioner for Research and Information. Fichtner also served as Chair of the National Association of State Liaisons for Workforce Development Partnerships, a workforce development affiliate of the National Governors Association. Before joining the Department of Labor, he was the Director of Research and Evaluation at Rutgers University’s Heldrich Center for Workforce Development.
Prior to joining NJCCC, Starghill served as Fichner’s Deputy Commissioner at NJDOL. She led many of the Department’s program areas including Research and Information, Income Security, and Labor Standards and Safety Enforcement. She previously served as Executive Director of Workforce Operations and Business Services at NJDOL where she oversaw the day-to-day operations of the One-Stop Career Centers and the integrated business outreach of workforce field staff with other state and local workforce partners. In that role, she was responsible for more than 300 employees and a $45 million budget. Prior to joining the NJDOL, Starghill was the Acting Director of the Division of Housing and Community Resources and Equal Employment Opportunity Officer at the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs.
About the New Jersey Council of County Colleges
The New Jersey Council of County Colleges (NJCCC) was created in 1989 to support and promote New Jersey’s 18 Community Colleges that now enroll more than 300,000 people each year in credit, non-credit, and workforce development courses at more than 70 campuses throughout the state. More than 200,000 students - over half of all undergraduate students in public colleges and universities in the state - are enrolled at New Jersey’s Community Colleges. The Community Colleges also enroll nearly 100,000 students in non-credit programs and partner with thousands of businesses to meet their training and workforce needs.
The primary goal of New Jersey’s 18 Community Colleges is to meet the ever-changing educational needs of our great state’s residents. Today, through more than 1,700 degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit courses and customized workforce training programs, New Jersey Community Colleges are helping more students than ever. Further, equity and access priorities are advanced every day with over half of the total undergraduate enrollment in New Jersey Community Colleges coming from minority and traditionally underrepresented populations.
To learn more about NJCCC and New Jersey’s Community Colleges, go to www.njccc.org. Follow us @NJCommColleges on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube to learn more about our latest programs and initiatives. For more information on the New Jersey Pathways to Career Opportunities Initiative, go to njpathways.org.
About NJCCC: New Jersey’s 18 agile and innovative Community Colleges are prepared to lead in the response to and recovery from this public health and economic crisis and to secure a brighter future for all New Jerseyans. The New Jersey Council of County Colleges provides statewide leadership for the advancement of New Jersey Community Colleges, performs coordinating responsibilities as required by law, and coordinates statewide efforts to build a skilled workforce and improve student success. We encourage you to visit our website at www.njccc.org.