Training Essential Workers

Now more than ever, essential workers are vital to the health, safety and financial stability of California.

Our colleges inspire future nurses, EMTs, firefighters, police officers and teachers. We keep this talent in our communities while lighting a path to career success for our students. 

Your gift helps us create healthy, thriving communities by training the people we need for the work we can't live without.

Mission College nursing assistant graduates

There is no time to wait.

If the recent past has taught us anything, it's how vital essential workers are to the health and financial stability of California. Yet we face an urgent reality: there is a critical shortage of firefighters, EMTs, healthcare workers, teachers, and law enforcement officers.

West Valley and Mission Community Colleges play an important role in ensuring that our local communities can continue to thrive and that our students can build successful careers that allow them to make a difference right here at home.

Training students for the jobs we can't live without

Mission College Nursing Program Answers the Call

By offering students the opportunity to earn a licensed vocational nursing degree, with the option to advance to a registered nursing degree, Mission College nursing students go on to work in a wide array of rewarding jobs in the health care field, while filling a critical need for life-saving care in our communities.

Nursing Student Graduate

Best in Class Firefighter Academy

As the only community college firefighter academy in the Bay Area, this program is vital for filling the ever-growing need for firefighters. A collaborative effort between Mission College and the Fire Departments serving Santa Clara County, this innovative program has helped fill the ranks of fire departments for more than 20 years.

Firefighters posed with fire engine

Early Childhood Education teachers to meet the demand

California school districts need an estimated 11,000 new teachers and 25,000 teacher assistants to expand transitional kindergarten. It’s a tall order for school district officials already in the midst of a daunting educator shortage. Our Early Childhood Education program gives students a leg up on the competition by gaining experience through a hands-on learning laboratory.

west valley college student group

Law enforcement officers with a sense of duty

Reeling from waves of retirements and resignations, police departments across California must recruit and retain new talent. West Valley College's Administration of Justice program prepares students for a variety of careers in the criminal justice field.

police officer at west valley career fair

  • 14%
    The current staffing levels of California nurses is 14% lower than necessary to meet community needs. This translates to a shortage of approximately 40,000 nurses.
  • 25%
    In summer 2022 the U.S. Forest Service had 25% fewer firefighters in California than it had planned for. This translates into nearly 1,300 unfilled jobs
  • 17%
    In the 2020-2021 school year, 17% of K-12 classes in California were taught by teachers who did not hold a credential to teach that course.
Kiely Combs West Valley College Alumna

Kiely Combs is just the kind of homegrown talent we need to address the teacher shortage.

She's always dreamed of becoming a teacher.