UA Engages with Higher Education and Career Readiness Task Force

UA President Pat Gamble, Associate Vice President for Workforce Programs Fred Villa and Lolly Carpluk, coordinator of the Alaska Native Teacher Preparation Project, are UA’s three representatives on the state’s Higher Education and Career Readiness Task Force, which met last week in Anchorage.

The task force was created by Senate Bill 221, which also established a performance scholarship program for the state of Alaska. The task force is charged with looking at college and career readiness in Alaska, as well reviewing the remedial (sometimes called development) courses necessary for many Alaska students pursuing education after high school.  The group is expected to present findings and recommendations to the legislature and governor. (See President’s Comments for more information on the task force.)

Gamble became the 13th president of the UA System in June, replacing former UA President Mark Hamilton, who retired after 12 years. Gamble previously served as president and chief executive officer of the Alaska Railroad Corp. since 2001. Before leading the railroad, Gamble had a long and distinguished career in the U.S. Air Force, retiring as a four-star general. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in mathematics from Texas A & M University and a Master of Business Administration from Auburn University in Alabama. Gamble was appointed to the task force by the Alaska Senate, one of several Senate appointments.

Carpluk, of Fairbanks, is the coordinator of the Alaska Native Teacher Preparation Project at UA Fairbanks. She served as director of the Future Teachers of Alaska Program for the University of Alaska and instructed the Upward Bound Yup’ik Language and Culture course at UAF. Carpluk has served in a variety of roles in education, including positions for the Lower Yukon School District, Kuskokwim Community College, Doyon Foundation, and the Yukon Kuskokwim Health Corporation. She earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology and a master’s degree in education from the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Carpluk was appointed by the governor to a seat representing expertise in education remediation.

Villa, of Fairbanks, is the associate vice president of workforce programs for the University of Alaska. In addition to working for the Alaska Teamsters Local 959, Ahtna Native Corporation, Fairbanks North Star Borough and the North Pole Refinery, he has served on a number of workforce development groups. These include the Alaska Business Education Compact, the Alaska Workforce Investment Board, the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act Training Plan Steering Committee, Putting Alaska’s Resources to Work and the Alaska Process Industry Careers Consortium. He earned a bachelor’s degree in therapeutic recreation from the University of South Dakota. Villa was appointed by the governor to a seat representing expertise in education remediation.

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