• Description

In 2013, Achieving the Dream convened seven network colleges to form the Northeast Resiliency Consortium (NRC). Created in the wake of natural and manmade disasters, the consortium sought to develop a resilient workforce. Led by Passaic County Community College, and including Atlantic Cape Community College, Bunker Hill Community College, Capital Community College, Housatonic Community College, Kingsborough Community College, and LaGuardia Community College, the consortium was awarded $23.5 million from the US Department of Labor's Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College Career Training (TAACCCT) program. Achieving the Dream served as the consortium's convening partner and as an intermediary to support peer learning among colleges, provide technical assistance, host in-person consortium convenings, and promote promising strategies implemented by the consortium. One important challenge the NRC colleges took on was aligning continuing education and credit programs along a career pathway to meet student and labor market needs. This brief describes how the colleges made adjustments to articulate non-credit to credit credentials to ensure strong career pathways for students who start on the non-credit ramp.

As a result, the colleges are now providing students with stacked credentials, ensuring prior learning and experience is accounted for within pathways, and are formally recognizing key milestones with credentials. All in all, the colleges smoothed the way for students to work toward an associate degree even if they began their studies in a non-credit program.