Workforce development expert joins Creative Associates International


July 28, 2015

An expert in developing economic growth projects that have improved the livelihoods of tens of thousands of people has joined Creative Associates International, the global development organization announced.

Katy Vickland, an expert in workforce development—inclusive value chains and local capacity building—will guide Creative’s teams working to address the challenges of high unemployment and poverty in vulnerable groups such as at-risk youth.

Vickland specializes in developing public-private partnerships for workforce development programs that strengthen connections among youth, business, civil society and training institutions.

“To be effective, it is imperative that workforce development programs be targeted to the needs of employers in growing sectors,” says Vickland. “Even in high unemployment environments such as Central America, we typically find job vacancies going unfilled because workforce programs aren’t preparing youth with the vocational and soft skills they need to succeed.”

From Afghanistan to China to Central America, Creative’s workforce development programs partner with governments, the private sector and civil society to develop targeted vocational and “soft skills” training programs to ensure that the capacities of the workforce match the demands of the market. Soft skills are the skills, behaviors and attitudes that enable workers to perform well on the job and in achieving other life goals.


Creative's approach to workforce development

Creative approaches workforce development as part of a comprehensive approach to youth development as well as risk reduction, matching training programs with the needs of employers in growing sectors and opening opportunities for individuals and their communities. Watch Video

Prior to Creative, Vickland was a Vice President of CARANA Corp., where she managed workforce and value chain development projects across Latin America and the Caribbean—from training more than 14,000 workers in El Salvador for a new or improved job, to assisting hundreds of Nicaraguan youth to start or grow a successful small business.

In her more than 25 years of experience leading successful workforce development and economic growth initiatives for public sector, nonprofit and corporate clients, Vickland has led project teams across the globe including Latin and Central America, Eastern and Central Europe, Asia, Africa and the United States.

She holds a Master’s degree in Public Policy, with a concentration in International Development, from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Carleton College.

About Creative Associates International

Creative Associates International works with underserved communities by sharing expertise and experience and building local capacity in education, economic growth, governance and transitions from conflict to peace.

Based in Washington, D.C., Creative has active projects in more than 15 countries. Since 1977, it has worked in nearly 90 countries and on almost every continent. Recognized for its ability to work rapidly, flexibly and effectively in conflict-affected environments, Creative is committed to generating long-term sustainable solutions to complex development problems.

Started by four enterprising women with diverse backgrounds, Creative has grown to become one of the leaders among the U.S. private sector implementers of global development projects. Creative is minority owned and operated.

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