As a hub for the Linked Learning movement, the Alliance offers research, stories, and tools that help people understand the impact of Linked Learning and implement this approach at high levels of quality.
This case study details how the four communities of the Great Lakes College and Career Pathways Partnership are working to systematically move the needle to ensure that all young people are prepared to not only meet the current and emerging needs of the workplace, but to also find value and meaning in their working lives, and fully realize their best possible futures.
This brief presents findings from the Oakland Health Pathways Project (OHPP), a joint initiative of Oakland Unified School District, Alameda Health System, and Alameda County Health Care Services Agency. The initiative is designed to improve educational and long-term employment outcomes for youth of color in Oakland (Alameda County), California, while expanding and diversifying the local health care workforce. It applies Linked Learning, an approach to college and career preparation that combines classroom learning with real-world work experiences. This brief draws on interviews with key personnel from the three partner organizations to distill lessons learned on effective cross-sector partnerships and delivery of authentic work-based learning. These lessons are timely as the health care industry is projected to account for about a third of total U.S. job growth through 2026, and includes 20 of the 30 fastest growing occupations nationally. Findings from this Oakland initiative can help other communities better align K-12 education and student experiences with projected local labor needs.
The responsibility to deliver college- and career-readiness education programs and services has evolved to include an array of organizational partnerships and alliances. Some act as intermediaries or hubs, aiming to coordinate communications, policy, and curriculum with state and local districts. Others seek to operate whole-school models within a school district. Linked Learning and NAF (formerly National Academy Foundation) are two such examples. Although each is unique, both exist with the explicit purpose of building long-term workforce opportunities by connecting education and industry.
SRI’s evaluation of the California Community College Linked Learning Initiative (CCCLLI) addressed implementation issues and institutional and student outcomes work by three community colleges and partnering K–12 districts to use the Linked Learning approach (e.g., transitional support strategies, align high school and college career pathway programs of study, enhance student support services) to improve college transitions and success. Each college created pathways in different industry sectors and built on its own programmatic strengths.