Career Pathways

In April 2012, the U.S. Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, and Labor released a letter endorsing the concept of “Career Pathways” as a promising approach to address the country’s challenge of how to prepare workers of all skill levels to participate fully in the country’s economic future. This challenge lies at the intersection of each department’s domains of expertise, and no solution can become fully functional without engaging each department’s constituency. The Departments defined Career Pathways as a series of connected education and training strategies and support services that enable individuals to secure industry relevant certification and obtain employment within an occupational area and to advance to higher levels of future education and employment in that area. In the Career Pathways initiatives sponsored by the departments to date, we have seen roles for each department’s stakeholders. The education community takes a lead on providing classroom-based learning, and then partners with business and workforce development professionals to create workplace-based learning opportunities. These connections help businesses meet short-term staffing needs and grow a next generation of skilled employees. At the same time, the human services field supports workers in balancing their educational, professional, and family responsibilities while they make this investment in their future. What makes these activities a true Career Pathways initiative is the commitment to cross-agency partnerships that identifies the strengths and needs of each partner and uses that expertise to build the pathway.
Record Type: 
Policy Announcement / Memoranda
July 2014
OFA Initiatives: 
Career Pathways
  • Education and Training
    • Career Pathways