Regional Economic Initiatives

MARC supports regional talent development efforts around postsecondary attainment and workforce development. Some of the current strategies follow:


GRADForce KC is the Local College Access Network serving the Kansas City region. The network is composed of education and community-based organizations focused on improving educational attainment and creating a talent pipeline for economic and civic vitality. Members of GradForce KC include the region’s largest school districts (by enrollment); tech academies; representatives from a network of 17 public and nonprofit postsecondary institutions; nonprofit, philanthropic and workforce organizations that are regional in scope and have a complementary mission; state officials located in the region whose work is related to education; and education intermediaries.


KC Rising is a collaborative effort of the Civic Council of Greater Kansas City, the Kansas City Area Development Council, the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce and Mid-America Regional Council. It focuses on three key drivers of regional prosperity — trade, ideas and people — which are enabled by infrastructure, governance and equity.

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KC Degrees connects adults in the Kansas City region, age 25 and older, to quality credentials and degrees by providing comprehensive career and education advising services and referrals to community organizations to help address barriers to success, including financial, family and/or academic barriers. To date, KC Degrees has helped 102 adults complete a postsecondary program and another 442 adults are currently enrolled.