Skip to main content
Go! Register for Spring today!

Columbus named an “intelligent community”

Columbus was the only U.S. city on a list of “intelligent communities,” with a big assist from Columbus State.

Top 7 logoColumbus was the only U.S. city on a list of “intelligent communities,” with a big assist from Columbus State.

Columbus was named to the Top7 list by the Intelligent Community Forum, a think tank that studies the economic and social development of the 21st Century community. Although Columbus is often seen as a sleepy, Rust Belt city, the forum says Columbus has taken smart steps to grow its economy.

In its contest application, the city touted Columbus State’s workforce development programs, which train workers in areas where there are open jobs.

"Columbus State Community College began convening meetings among business leaders in what were deemed critical and emerging industry sectors within the region in an attempt to develop industry sector strategies – a model held nationally as the most effective approach to aligning workforce and talent needs," according to the application.

Columbus State led the way with its ART (Attracting and Retain Talent) programs, which analyze an industry sector and develop short-term training to meet immediate needs. The LogisticsART program trained nearly 900 people for logistics careers with a 75 percent placement rate. The college is working on ART programs for Bioscience Manufacturing, IT and Insurance.

Additionally, Columbus State convened the Regional College Success Summit, which brings together representatives from higher education, K-12 education and the community to discuss student enrollment and success. The summits are working toward a regional strategy for college completion. (College Access Summit site)

And Columbus State is one of many promising efforts: Ohio State University recruits talented students who create new technologies, and nonprofits like TechColumbus help turn those technologies into thriving businesses.

Central Ohio is building on its strengths in advanced manufacturing, logistics and IT and creating new entrepreneurs. City government cut spending during the recession but also raised taxes to fund development, the group noted.

“Having added 29,000 new jobs from 2010 to 2012, the Columbus metro region is one of few old industrial regions to reverse a ‘brain drain’ and show net in-migration for the first time in decades,” according to Intelligent Communities.

The following cities made the list: Columbus, Ohio; Oulu, Finland; Stratford, Ontario, Canada; Taichung City, Taiwan; Tallinn, Estonia; Taoyuan County, Taiwan; Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Trained Columbus State, Workforce Development Program graduates enjoying success in the workplace include: Lanette Wells, Steven Newman and Terri Handshoe


Trained CSCC Workforce Development Graduate

Lanette Wells


Trained CSCC Workforce Development Graduate

Steven Newman 


Trained CSCC Workforce Development Graduate

Terri Handshoe