Design Insights Brief: Community College Growth Engine Micro-pathways: A Gateway to Community College Transformation

Design Insights: An Education Design Lab publication series.

The current COVID-19 crisis and historic inequities in our labor market have disproportionately impacted and exacerbated long-standing barriers for new majority learners to have access to what we all hope for: An opportunity to achieve our goals and find a higher standard of living for ourselves and our families.

That’s why the Lab continues to expand the Community College Growth Engine (CCGE or the Engine, for short ) — a design accelerator to work with community colleges and systems across the country to co-create a new class of credentials: micro-pathways.

The first CCGE cohort has designed more than 30 new micro-pathway models for industry groups to rally around, and is ready to share insights to enable adoption, replication, and scale by other learning providers and regions.

In this brief, you’ll find:

+ A glimpse of our work on the ground, including key components and criteria on how to design and deliver micro-pathways;

+ Innovative micro-pathways from each participating college currently being piloted;

+ Insights from learners, employers, and colleges;

+ Where this work is headed next.

Together, our partner colleges are working through the Lab’s human-centered design process — built to center learners and employers.

Community colleges are in a unique position to improve social mobility and reduce economic disparities. As the economy continues to evolve, it’s clear the future demands a system of higher education that is inclusive, responsive, dynamic, and adaptable. The Lab will continue to share proof points and tools that will impact more learners and strengthen communities across the country.


Follow our Community College Growth Engine Fund work on Twitter: @eddesignlab #Micropathways

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