Career & Technical Education

Issue Focus

Meeting the Needs of Workers and Employers

November, 2020

Low-wage workers have been hit particularly hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, experiencing greater levels of unemployment than their higher-wage-earning peers. Training programs that focus on moving workers into skilled jobs in industries with strong local demand could reposition them for 21st-century success.

Brief

Career and Technical Education Connects the Dots

October, 2020

The economic recession triggered by the global pandemic has magnified the need for high-quality programs that can help students acquire the skills, training, and postsecondary credentials they need to thrive in the workplace. Here are some programs that studies show improved academic outcomes and increased earnings.

Rural higher education has historically been neglected by the research community. There has been little evidence produced to inform the field of “what works” in rural colleges, what different sets of concerns rural students and their families face, or whether nationally recognized best practices are relevant for rural institutions. Homegrown, locally developed...

Brief

A Synthesis of Findings on Sector Strategies

September, 2020

Job seekers with low incomes face numerous hurdles to finding and keeping high-quality jobs. Sector strategies address those hurdles by matching job seekers with skills training for specific industries or occupations where there is a growing demand. This review examines a cross-section of strategies, highlighting successes and areas for improvement.

Issue Focus

An Interview with Karen Pennington and Dawn Slinkard

July, 2020

Tulsa Community WorkAdvance is a sector-based training and career advancement program that prepares people for jobs in the health care field. Executive Director Karen Pennington talks about the impact of COVID-19 on operations and future opportunities in health care, and graduate Dawn Slinkard describes her experience in the program.

Report

Promising Results from a Bridge-to-College Model

May, 2020

Bridge-to-college programs aim to help people complete high school and enroll in postsecondary education. This evaluation of one such program at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in Green Bay, WI finds that it helped more students earn their GEDs and enroll in college courses.

Report

Interim Implementation and Impact Findings from New York City’s P-TECH 9-14 Schools

May, 2020

This report evaluates a program focused on preparing students for college and career. Based on partnerships among high schools, community colleges, and employers, the program offers accelerated high school course work, early college, and work-based learning experiences. The findings suggest that students are meeting the benchmarks they need to succeed.

Brief

How Community Colleges Are Advancing Equity in Career and Technical Education

April, 2020

Community college career and technical education (CTE) can fill shortages in the labor market while providing a pathway to economic mobility. But can it do so equitably? In 2019, MDRC’s Center for Effective CTE conducted a scan of notable programs across the country to find out more.

Report

Costs, Benefits, and Impacts from the WorkAdvance Demonstration

March, 2020
Kelsey Schaberg, David H. Greenberg

WorkAdvance goes beyond the previous generation of employment programs, concentrating on demand-driven skills training and identifiable career pathways. Findings show the approach increased earnings and led to advancement gains over time at the most successful study sites. One program, Per Scholas, boosted earnings by 20 percent in the last year of follow-up.

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