Advancing San Diego

Advancing San Diego is a collaborative effort to address skilled talent shortages, increase diversity in high-growth, high-demand jobs, and expand access to talent for small companies.

Advancing San Diego is helping the region meet its inclusive growth goals by strengthening relationships between local industry and education systems. Better alignment between these systems will mean that the region can collectively prepare San Diegans for high-demand jobs, and local employers – many of which are small companies – can establish or expand recruitment relationships with locally-serving institutions.

In 2019, San Diego was selected as one of five cities to receive a $3 million investment as part of JPMorgan Chase’s AdvancingCities Challenge, an initiative to drive inclusive growth and create greater economic opportunity across the U.S. Led by EDC, Advancing San Diego is a collaboration between San Diego Workforce Partnership, San Diego Imperial County Community College Association, the City of San Diego, and United Way of San Diego.

Get involved:

→ Meet Advancing San Diego’s Preferred Providers of talent

→ Join us October 20 for the Advancing San Diego: Career Exploration Day & Virtual Career Fair


Advancing San Diego

Goals of Advancing San Diego:

  1. Engage employers in a structured process to develop skills-based criteria for high-demand jobs
  2. Identify education programs (“Preferred Providers”) that are preparing students for high-demand, quality jobs
  3. Increase the pool of diverse, skilled talent in San Diego
  4. Expand access to talent pipelines for small companies

How to get involved:

Using a framework developed by the US Chamber of Commerce Foundation called Talent Pipeline Management, employer working groups develop skills-based criteria for high-demand jobs and offer feedback to education providers on how to update & improve curriculum. The only requirement for participating in a working group is hiring need for the group’s job focus. If your company is interested in participating in the marketing working group this summer, add your name to this list and we’ll reach out to you.

Talent providers can apply for designation as a Preferred Provider – education programs recognized by employers as providing the skills and training necessary for individuals to pursue high-demand jobs or internships. Applicants for the Preferred Provider designation are evaluated against a skills-based criteria developed through employer working groups.

Once students enrolled in Preferred Provider programs complete a certain set of courses, they become eligible for fully-funded internships within small companies and startups.

We understand that many small companies – defined as having fewer than 100 employees – often do not have the time or resources to heavily invest in talent attraction strategies. Advancing San Diego will cover the cost of interns from preferred provider programs (see talent provider section above) for small companies and startups. If your small company would like to host interns in the fields of software, engineering, or marketing, please sign up to receive updates on application periods.

  • Software engineering internships (Summer 2020)
  • Engineering internships (Fall 2020)
  • Marketing internships (Winter 2021) – application coming soon.

Learn more 



Kate Gallagher
Kate Gallagher

Senior Manager, Economic Development