Innovate78 gathered a group of North County manufacturers at MiraCosta College’s Technology Career Institute (TCI) on Thursday to present resources, networking opportunities, and discuss positive impacts of the manufacturing industry along the SR-78 corridor. This event was part of a series of industry-specific dinners Innovate78 will hold in 2023 to provide resources to businesses located along the corridor.


MiraCosta College’s Technology Career Institute

Executive Director Linda Kurokawa presented information about TCI and how their accelerated learning programs teach students hands-on, immediately applicable technical skills in a semester or less. TCI offers courses in a variety of technical skills, including engineering technology, high speed manufacturing, welding and medical device repair. Many of these directly meet the needs of North County manufacturers, and TCI is continually looking to adapt curriculum to new needs.

“What an amazing time we live in. We sometimes cannot predict what the jobs will be in two years,” said Kurokawa. “MiraCosta has focused on ‘Futures Thinking’ about what advancements we need to make to meet [employers] needs. We need to accelerate our training. People are ready for hands on training that’s more active, more applicable to a position. [Students] are not just graduating to have something on their wall.”

For more information see MiraCosta College’s Work Skills & Certification Training Wesbite. They especially are interested in conversations with companies that may want to provide input to course contents or those interested in partnering with TCI for internships.

Innovate78 Dinner - Linda Kurokawa discusses TCI programs with guests

Executive Director Linda Kurokawa discusses TCI programs with guests in one of their hands-on classrooms.


Cal Competes Program

Matthew Mena from California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA) shared information about California Competes, a competitive 5-year tax credit program. The next enrollment period for the program is March 6-20. Informational webinars are scheduled for March 8 and March 16. California Competes provides a tax credit for companies against their California State corporate tax liabilities. It is especially beneficial to companies that are looking to grow or make capital investments. The program is competitive and based upon objectives that are both quantitative (the number of jobs and economic value compared to the requested credit) and qualitative (the wages paid to workers and the geographic location of the enterprise).

To learn more about the program, visit the California Competes website. Economic Development Managers throughout North County are trained on how to assist companies with filling out the application, and you can find a list of their contact information here on the Innovate78 website.

“There is no downside to applying. If you plan to grow or invest in your company, you should apply,” said Larry Vaupel, Economic Development Manager for the City of Vista.

People sitting at a table listening to a female presenter.

Amanda Cheney discusses the free services that CMTC provides for California Manufacturers.


California Manufacturing Technology Consulting

Amanda Cheney from California Manufacturing Technology Consulting (CMTC) shared information about the non-profit organization and the support it provides California manufacturers. With partial funding from the state and federal governments, CMTC offers manufacturers a number of different programs and services, including free webinars, consulting, and fee-based training on ISO standards and cybersecurity practices.

“My job is to identify needs, connect you to subject experts, and direct you to resources. Tell me what you need, and I’ll connect you to [a solution],” said Cheney.

Innovate78 is a five-city collaborative between Oceanside, Vista, Escondido, Carlsbad, and Oceanside. By cooperating on economic development activities, the goal of the collaborative is to strengthen North County’s competitive edge and increase prosperity for its cities.


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About the Author

Caitlyn Canby loves to discover and share people’s stories. She has her bachelor’s degree in Communications, Print Journalism with over 8 years of journalism experience. An Escondido native, she just moved back from Catalina Island to North County with her husband and two children to the town of Fallbrook. Caitlyn enjoys collaborating on projects as Marketing and Events Coordinator at SDNEDC, traveling, and exploring new restaurants, venues, experiences, and cultures.




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