Rutgers has a long tradition of providing training to New Jersey’s workforce. The NJAES Office of Continuing Professional Education (OCPE) was established in 1906 and served 22 New Jersey farmers that year by providing technical information through two- and three-day “short courses.”
Today, OCPE successfully supports the learning needs of thousands of people in the state of New Jersey and beyond. With over 10,000 enrollments in more than 250 individual courses last year, the careers of public health professionals were launched, the horticultural knowledge of landscapers was improved, and residents from across the state learned the importance of beekeeping. From drinking water operators to recycling professionals and environmental consultants, continuing education training is delivered to keep them up-to-date in their disciplines and to assist them in maintaining their professional certifications.
Since 1997, OCPE’s Workforce Development/Customized Training Unit has delivered training to over 150,000 employees, and more than 200 “employer clients” have been awarded close to $17 million in grants from the New Jersey Department of Labor. The training—in such diverse areas as food safety, computer applications, foreign languages, multiculturalism, team building, communications, business writing, and managing conflict—is designed to upgrade employee skills in order to ensure that New Jersey’s workforce is strong, productive, and globally competitive.
Through a long-standing partnership with the New Jersey Department of Health, OCPE staff develops courses, manages statewide conferences, and creates online tools to support and improve continuing education and licensing procedures for New Jersey’s Health Officers and Registered Environmental Health Specialists.
In addition, OCPE hosts, supports, and maintains an online training, examination, and certification platform used by emergency response personnel from across the state.
OCPE’s Conference Unit boasts decades of event management experience. It offers a la carte options to a full suite of event support services to clients that include the New Jersey Department of Children and Families and the New Jersey Pest Management Association, and hosts conferences on myriad topics, from obesity prevention to duckweed management.
The CPE Media team provides high-quality multimedia and production assistance services to enhance the communication, education, and marketing goals of organizations and businesses across the state. Learn more at cpe.rutgers.edu.
Editor’s Note: this story originally appeared in the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Stations 2015 Annual Report.