October 4, 2022
At a Glance
The Student Success Center of Ohio commits to JFF’s Guided Career Pathways model to advance the state’s postsecondary focus on economic mobility and workforce alignment.
On September 14 and 15, we were thrilled to join the Success Center for Ohio Community Colleges and Ohio community college leadership, faculty, and staff to introduce JFF’s Guided Career Pathways framework (GCP).
At the Ohio Association of Community College’s joint officer’s leadership meeting, we presented an overview of the GCP framework and highlighted innovative approaches to organizing and aligning workforce and education strategies from across JFF’s Student Success Center Network. We also led a rich discussion on the critical need to analyze data and commit to post-graduate completion outcomes such as employment and earnings.
The following day, we provided opening remarks at the Student Success Leadership Institute, celebrating Ohio’s 10th anniversary as a member of JFF’s Student Success Center Network, and recognizing Ohio’s postsecondary leadership over the past decade. Laura Rittner, executive director of the Success Center for Ohio Community Colleges, noted several of the milestones and accomplishments of the Center and the state’s community colleges in the past ten years, including:
- Improved Degree Completion: 162,000 associate degrees have been awarded, with a 16% increase in 2021 compared to 2013.
- Increased Job-focused Credentials; 33,7000 long-term certificates have been awarded, with a 34% increase in 2021 compared to 2013.
- Closing the Equity Gaps: The total number of credentials awarded annually to African American students has increased by 40% since 2013.
During the meeting, Rittner also announced Ohio’s commitment to JFF’s Guided Career Pathways as the framework Ohio will use to advance the state’s postsecondary focus on economic mobility, equity, and workforce alignment. Using the Guided Career Pathways framework to align their work, institutions can build pathways that meet labor market demand, create expanded on-ramps and outreach strategies, and integrate work-based learning. In a follow-up interview, Laura Rittner shared insights on the state’s decision to adopt Guided Career Pathways, saying,
“We’ve made significant progress with scaling Guided Pathways based on evidence from the field, and what Ohio colleges have learned works best. We have great opportunities ahead of us, but at the same time, we need more community college students to earn associate degrees and be ready for high wage, high demand jobs in our state.”
“JFF’s Guided Career Pathways framework can take our Guided Pathways work to the next level and help us more intentionally focus on practices that ensure students get the skills they need to prepare them for the great career opportunities we have now and in the future.”
To kick off the implementation of the GCP framework, the Association of Ohio Community Colleges and Ohio’s Student Success Center are identifying best practices and state experts currently implementing these strategies at their institutions. Additionally, Ohio will draw on and build from efforts across JFF’s Student Success Center Network states, including New Jersey’s Pathways to Career Opportunities initiative and the Texas Reskilling and Upskilling through Education project.
JFF’s Guided Career Pathways framework can take our Guided Pathways work to the next level and help us more intentionally focus on practices that ensure students get the skills they need to prepare them for the great career opportunities we have now and in the futureLaura Rittner, executive director, Ohio Student Success Center
Ohio’s interest in refreshing its pathways priorities comes as the state works to respond to new labor market opportunities and talent needs driven by Intel’s investment in two large-scale semiconductor manufacturing facilities on which they broke ground in September. Intel recently awarded $2.8 million to fund Ohio’s Semiconductor Collaboration Network to support Ohio’s 23 community colleges. Led by Columbus State Community College, the network will focus on curriculum enhancement and development, faculty professional development and training, and experiential and project-based learning.
In a press release about Intel’s investment, President David Harrison said, “Columbus State and Ohio’s community colleges are well prepared to work with Intel and their suppliers to bring a new industry to Ohio.” He also noted, “Intel’s commitment to workforce equity and diversity is among the most exciting aspects of this work. The career pathways we’ll build together will result in life-changing economic opportunity for thousands of Ohio students and families and will go a long way toward establishing a new, equitable standard of prosperity for our state.”
We are delighted that Ohio is harnessing the Guided Career Pathways to facilitate the career opportunities of Ohioans and congratulate the state and the Success Center for Ohio Community Colleges on their steadfast commitment to student success and economic opportunity for all.