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Date of Award

Spring 5-13-2019

Author Requested Restriction

Open Access (no restriction)

Work Type

Dissertation in Practice

Degree Name

Doctor of Educational Leadership (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Fern Tiger

Second Advisor

Gerald Pumphrey

Third Advisor

Vince Pecchia


This study examined efforts to establish and sustain collaborative educational partnerships across multiple sectors to support the resolution of complex community challenges related to skilled workforce gaps. Much attention has been placed on the politics, structures, and outcomes of such efforts, but there has been a lack of information on the relationships involved—especially within local contexts. This comparative case study of contrasting models of collaborative efforts within two communities focused on how each partnership was established and sustained, how they increased access to skilled careers, and how they were influenced by relational interdependence. This paper provides a narrative and thematic analysis of the experiences at each site. The comparative analysis of themes then summarizes the five common strengths/challenges experienced in both locations: structures, relationships, communication, tenacity, and vision. The primary finding from the research is that individuals in key roles within each organization were the critical factors in efforts to establish and sustain such collaborative programs and that communication and transference of information during role transitions were key factors for ongoing stability.