Chevron San Joaquin Valley Business Unit
Social Investment Program Research and Analysis
In May 2018, Chevron Corporation engaged RDA to conduct research of education and workforce development needs and opportunities in the San Joaquin Valley. As part of its strategy for corporate social responsibility, Chevron was planning to develop new social investment programs in Kern, Monterey, and Fresno Counties that focus on bolstering K-12 education and workforce development programs. Chevron engaged RDA to conduct primary and secondary research to inform a social investment strategic plan for each county that aligns to local community development needs.
For this engagement, we leveraged our deep knowledge of the issues facing rural Central Valley communities and our in-house expertise in education and workforce development programming to employ a structured community research design that allowed for rigorous research activities within a brief timeline. We built on Chevron’s findings from previous interviews and focus groups with community members in Fresno, Kern, and Monterey Counties by: 1) Conducting primary and secondary research on the counties; 2) identifying gaps and prioritizing needs for workforce development; 3) highlighting current programs and services; and 4) providing recommendations on social investment opportunities.
In July 2018, RDA presented Chevron with initial research findings, including recommendations that Chevron invest in strategies with the highest ROI and feasibility, plan for a three-year investment, and expand existing programs to leverage established services. Recommended areas for investment included afterschool and youth development programs, college readiness programming, college scholarships, career technical education programs, and contextualized ESL programs. After a series of discussions and planning meetings to refine the domains for investment and identify next steps, Chevron identified investments in workforce development, college success, and K-12 education as priority areas, as well as potential for supporting leadership development programs.
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