Findings from the Career Pathways Demonstration Project
In December 2017, Blueprint was engaged by the Ontario Centre for Workforce Innovation to lead a demonstration project focused on testing the feasibility of the Career Pathways model in Ontario. The findings from this project are now available.
Career Pathways is an innovative post-secondary training model that helps individuals obtain skilled jobs by progressing through a series of modular training steps along a chosen career path. Career Pathways has delivered promising results in the United States.
Blueprint partnered with Conestoga College to evaluate two programs they had designed that were aligned with the Career Pathways model: Supportive Care and Warehouse Essentials. We also conducted additional research and consulted with stakeholders to answer broader questions about the relevance, feasibility, and value of the model in the Ontario context.
The majority of program participants in Conestoga College’s programs completed the training, reported high levels of satisfaction, gained employment, and were interested in remaining in the sectors targeted by the programs. However, questions emerged —surrounding funding, student supports, recruitment, and employer engagement—that emphasize the challenges surrounding the scaling of the Career Pathways model.
The project also highlighted that while Career Pathways has the capacity to work as a framework for organizing education, workforce development, and support services to meet both individual and employer needs, there is a critical need for ongoing study and collaboration in order for the model to realize its potential as a transformative solution to Ontario’s key workforce development challenges.