We connect the people, programs, and priorities that foster a thriving workforce in Western North Carolina.

About the Land of Sky P20 Council

Connecting the people, programs, and priorities that foster a thriving workforce.

The Land of Sky P20 Council facilitates collaboration between stakeholders in education, community, government, and business to ensure Western North Carolina’s students and jobseekers are getting the knowledge, skills, credentials, and support they need to be successful in the region’s most high-demand jobs.

Addressing gaps in the student-to-stakeholder journey that starts in Pre-K, these collaborations shape policy, promote access to the full spectrum of relevant credentialing opportunities, remove barriers to attainment, and bring attention to the talent needs of our region’s employers.

Council members include students, educators, administrators, members of local government, and business leaders who share a common interest in connecting people, programs, and priorities to foster a thriving workforce and economy.

Our Mission

The Land of Sky P20 Council fosters collaboration among employers, educators, and community members in the spirit of enduring economic prosperity, through the alignment of innovative cradle-to-career skills and resources that lead to life-sustaining job opportunities in our four-county region of Western North Carolina.

Our Vision

To prepare a workforce with the needed skills and competencies leading to employment at a life-sustainable wage level.


What Is a P20 Council?

“P” (Preschool) through “Grade/Age 20” (Graduate School)

A P20 Education Council is a local partnership organization whose purpose is networking and linking a relevant continuum of important information from preschool through university and into careers for our evolving 2020 workforce.


P20 Education Councils are structured as a vertical pipeline vehicle for student advising, counseling, guidance, and information. P20 Education Councils promote communication, agreements, and opportunities between school districts, colleges, universities and industries to facilitate student advancement and certificate and degree program progress by smoothing out the present disconnected communication system of education from preschool through graduate school and into the workforce.

Psychology Today

Executive Director

Emily Nicholson, M.Ed., has served as the P20 Council’s Executive Director since 2022. The Executive Director works with the Executive Steering Committee Chair to maintain membership engagement, communication, and implementation of strategic objectives. 

Learn more about our Executive Director.

Executive & Steering Committees

Key to enhancing the leadership development capacity is the ability to “grow” the P20 Council’s role in planning, organizing, leading, staffing, and controlling operational policies and procedures. The Executive & Steering Committees play an important role in providing direction to the Executive Director, while guiding the development, engagement, and actions of the P20 Council membership.

Learn more about our Executive & Steering Committees.

Action Teams

P20 Council members serve on action teams that are focused on implementation measures to close the credentialing gap. Each action team employs a mix of expertise, and much of the work of the P20 Council is conducted via homework that action team members complete between meetings.

Learn more about our Action Teams.

P20 Council Meetings

The Executive Director convenes the full P20 Council for a meeting once each quarter. We rotate the venue each time, so that we meet in each of our four counties at least once a year.

Learn more about our Council Meetings.

P20 Council Delegates for 2023-2025

P20 Council Trustees (Inaugural Cohort of Delegates for 2021-2023)

Our History



In 2018, North Carolina’s thought leaders in education, business, faith-based and nonprofit communities, representatives from the North Carolina General Assembly, and the Governor’s Office established the myFutureNC Commission. After conducting a statewide conversation about economic competitiveness, workforce development, and educational attainment, the Commission set goals, and the initiative was later signed into law by Governor Roy Cooper.

Mid 2019

Land of Sky Educational Attainment and Workforce Collaborative is established.

The Land of Sky Educational Attainment and Workforce Collaborative, the “Collaborative,” was established in mid-2019 as a pilot program to lead a four-county region toward fulfilling its portion of the state’s overall myFutureNC goal of 2 million credentialed state residents by 2030.

Nov 2019

Developed Steering Committee

The Collaborative assembled educational and business thought leaders, including representatives from public and private four-year universities, community colleges, K-12 public school systems, economic development coalitions, and businesses. These thought leaders met in November 2019 to begin the process of moving the Collaborative forward. In addition, a Steering Committee was developed to continue the work.



LOS Educational Attainment and Workfoce Collaborative’s Steering Committee established the P20 Council.

In Fall 2021, the Land of Sky Educational Attainment & Workforce Collaborative’s Steering Committee established the P20 Council to move this collaborative work forward. The P20 Council is composed of key stakeholders that foster educational attainment that leads to gainful employment. The idea and structure developed were based on the efforts of workgroups set up by the Steering Committee in 2019, which continued into 2020.


LOS P20 Council released its inaugural policy agenda.

In June of 2023, Land of Sky P20 Council released its inaugural policy agenda, which represents the first opportunity for collective advocacy specific to the collaborative’s four strategic goals for addressing the chronic funding barriers that impede growth in all aspects of the education-to-workforce pipeline in our four-county region.

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team.

You have Successfully Subscribed!