Investments In The Workforce Of The Future - Early Learning

Strong economic development and entrepreneurship are only possible when a region invests in the development of its workforce. Companies cite the availability of a workforce as a central factor in the consideration of where they choose to expand and grow. Under the leadership and direction of Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke, the City of Chattanooga created the Office of Early Learning to create increased access to early childhood education programs. Research shows that a child’s brain develops most between the ages of zero and 3 years old, yet formal education for most children begins at age 5 in kindergarten or at age 4 if a family is able to enroll their child in a Pre-K program. The City of Chattanooga intends to ensure that Chattanooga’s children have access to the best opportunities for early education. In 2018, Mayor Berke announced a goal of creating 1,000 additional seats for early learning. Long term investments in our City’s workforce start with our children. For additional information about the City’s Office of Early Learning, click HERE.

K-12 Education

The City of Chattanooga works closely with Hamilton County and the Hamilton County Department of Education (HCDE) to support area public schools. HCDE is focused on ensuring that every HCDE student graduates high school with the skills and education to thrive in the economy of tomorrow. In 2018, HCDE established the FutureReady Institutes to offer education focused on specific careers at each of the district’s high schools. The FutureReady Institutes are not only designed to prepare students for specific careers, but also to seamlessly transition from high school to post-secondary education. Earning a post-secondary credential is essential in securing a lasting and durable career. For additional information about the Hamilton County Department of Education, click HERE. For information regarding HCDE’s FutureReady Institutes, click HERE.

Post-Secondary Education

The Chattanooga area is the home of several colleges and universities. The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC) – part of the University of Tennessee system – is located in Downtown Chattanooga, just a short walk from our City’s Innovation District. UTC offers a variety of undergraduate programs and majors and several graduate programs as well. Located along the Tennessee River, Chattanooga State Community College offers several Associates Degree post-secondary programs. Located within Chattanooga State’s campus is the college-within-the-college: the Tennessee College of Applied Technology (TCAT). Boasting a near 80% graduation rate, the TCAT offers degree and certificate programs in trades and industrial education. Covenant College on Lookout Mountain; Southern Adventist University in Collegedale; and Lee University in Cleveland are private institutions of higher education in the Chattanooga area.

Office Of Workforce Development

In 2017, the City of Chattanooga created the Office of Workforce Development. This office is focused on helping unemployed and under-employed adults find opportunities for work. The office also works closely with employers who are looking to hire. The Office of Workforce Development was created to convene all of the community partners focused on workforce development in an effort to align goals and strategies for getting more adults employed in higher-paying jobs. The Office of Workforce Development also works closely with higher-education partners; the City of Chattanooga’s Office of Family Empowerment; the Education Opportunity Center; and the Hamilton County Department of Education. For additional information about the Office of Workforce Development, click HERE.

Ultra High-Speed Internet & Innovation District

Slow internet speeds are not acceptable in an age where business moves at the speed of light. In Chattanooga, we believe that our residents and businesses deserve better, so we built better. Working with our locally-owned public utility the Electric Power Board (EPB), the City of Chattanooga built a massive broadband fiber network that every household within our City can access. Our investment in our ultra high-speed broadband infrastructure led to the creation of our Innovation District, a part of our Downtown where innovation and tech companies have gathered to form. Anchored by the Edney Building in an area that includes City Hall, the Innovation District is now home to a number of tech companies and start-ups. The proximity of City Hall to the Innovation District means that our local government is very invested in the growth of our innovation economy and tech community. These companies will create the jobs of tomorrow for Chattanoogans. For additional information about the Innovation District, click HERE.

Geography And Connecting

Chattanooga is located in southeast Tennessee, just north of the Tennessee-Georgia state line. Our City is located at the intersection of 3 major interstate highways, I-75, I-24, and I-59, as well as U.S. Hwy. 27. Chattanooga is a 90-minute drive northwest of Atlanta, and a 1 hour and 45 minute drive southeast of Nashville and northeast of Birmingham. Bus service from Greyhound and MegaBus are available.

The Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport (airport code: CHA) offers access to 4 airlines: Allegiant Air; American Airlines; Delta Air Lines; and United Airlines. Nonstop service is offered to 10 cities: Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, New York City, Orlando, Philadelphia, Tampa-St. Pete, and Washington, DC. For additional information about the Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport, please click HERE.