Middle-Skill STEM State Policy Framework

In the fall of 2013, Achieving the Dream (ATD) and Jobs for the Future (JFF) began examining how state policy can enable more community college students to earn credentials that provide access to robust and well-paying career opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). In particular, ATD and JFF focused on the role community colleges can play in building supportive pathways for students who might otherwise struggle to complete STEM programs of study. With generous support from The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust, and through intensive collaboration with colleges and state policymakers, our organizations have created this Middle-Skill STEM State Policy Framework to help states advance the creation of middle-skill STEM pathways and incent students to enter and complete these pathways.

The document includes:

  • A proposal for how to advance the community college middle-skill STEM agenda—and increase the likelihood of successful outcomes for students seeking credentials that will provide them entry into middle-skill STEM jobs
  • A description of the middle-skill STEM opportunity and challenge in greater detail
  • A summary of the growing evidence base on what it will take to redesign community college pathways—including STEM pathways—to be more efficient and effective for their students
  • A framework for state policy agenda that aligns with this evidence base

An executive summary is also available on this page.

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