May 7, 2021
With support from the Lumina Foundation, the Center on Education and Labor at New America (CELNA) has launched the New Models for Career Preparation Project to better understand the design, financing, and strategy principles that go into creating high-quality non-degree programs at community colleges that lead to quality jobs and careers.
For this work, “non-degree programs” also known as “short-term or pre-degree programs” include for-credit or not-for-credit certificates, industry-award certification and occupational license preparation programs, apprenticeships, bootcamps, badges, and other forms of career and technical education offered by community colleges.
Quality matters: Research has shown that too many non-degree programs lead to no jobs or poverty-wage jobs, especially for women and racial minorities. At the same time, there are many quality jobs and careers that do not require a bachelor's degree, and more employers are dropping degree requirements recognizing that they are not required to excel in a role and may hinder diversification strategies. We need to center quality at the core of all non-degree community college programs. This project will help accomplish that goal.