Verified Programs

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Verified Programs are recognized by employers as delivering top-quality training for high-demand jobs across San Diego and Imperial counties.

Through a competitive application process, programs are assessed in five key areas:

Technical Skills

Employability Skills

Industry Engagement

Diversity & Inclusion

History of Collaboration

The K-16 Collaborative, San Diego Regional EDC, and Imperial Valley EDC invite post-secondary institutions within San Diego and Imperial Counties to apply to become a Verified Program in:


Application window:
June 12 & 13th - September 27th

To apply, email Bridgette Coleman at the EDC for a unique link

Scroll down to view the
2024 Verified Program Timeline

Through an employer-led process, and using the established model, Advancing San Diego verifies educational programs that are meeting (or exceeding) industry expectations in five key areas. Programs that meet the standards set by employers are publicly recognized as Verified Programs of Talent (formerly called ‘Preferred Providers’).

Benefits of being a Verified Program:

  • Employer-recognized curriculum.
  • Teaching in-demand skills and preparing students for high-wage jobs in San Diego and Imperial counties.
  • Networking opportunities with regional employers and workforce partners.
  • Access to paid internship opportunities for students.
  • Ability to keep your programs current as technology advances and new skills are required for career success.

How colleges can become a verified program

Participate in the verified program process meetings

Engage in curriculum alignment to industry standards using Talent Demand Reports

Collaborate with faculty to determine which program(s) to verify

Submit your verified program application(s)

“Pitch” your program idea to employers in San Diego and Imperial counties

2024 Timeline

June 12: Verified Program application opens for computing and engineering programs (programs designated in 2023 do not need to apply. This opportunity is for programs that did not submit an application or were not verified in 2023)
To apply, email Bridgette Coleman at the EDC for a unique link

June 13: 2024 Talent Demand Report for business occupations released and Verified Program application opens for business programs (all interested programs must submit an application)
To apply, email Bridgette Coleman at the EDC for a unique link

July-October: One-on-one meetings with EDC team for program applicants (The Border Region K-16 Talent Pipeline Collaborative has arranged Community of Practice meetings for any publicly funded programs interested. REGISTER HERE to receive meeting invitations)

September 27: All Verified Program applications due (part one)

October 17: Deadline for EDC to send Verified Program application decisions (part one)

October 17-October 31: Meetings with programs and EDC team moving forward to Verified Program application part two preparation

November 13: Verified Program Designation Day
(Verified Program application part two: Programs network with industry to share diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts at in-person event)

December 12: Verified Programs official announcement