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Company: IBM Corporation

Nomination Category: Best Youth Employment Strategy

 

Nomination Title: P-TECH - Educating the Future Workforce and Closing the Global Skills Gap

 

Achievement Essay

P-TECH School Model is a pioneering education reform initiative created by IBM, to prepare young people with the academic, technical and professional skills required for 21st Century Jobs and ongoing education. P-TECH represents the best of what public-private partnerships can look like, with students taking high school and college coursework simultaneously and engaging in industry-guided workforce development.

P-TECH schools span grades 9-14 and enable students to earn both a high school diploma and a no-cost, two-year postsecondary degree in a STEM field. Students participate in a range of workplace experiences, including mentorship, worksite visits and paid internships. Upon graduation, students have the academic and professional skills required to either continue their education in a four-year postsecondary institution or enter into entry-level careers in IT, healthcare, advanced manufacturing and other competitive fields. While the P-TECH Model encompasses six years, students are able to move at their own pace, enabling some to accelerate through the model in as little as four years. P-TECH serves students from primarily underserved backgrounds, with no testing or grade requirements.

A P-TECH school relies on developing and sustaining healthy partnerships. Successful partnerships are characterized by shared responsibility and decision-making, close collaboration and honest communication.

Many community college degree programs have been developed to help ensure that students accumulate some postsecondary credits. However, P-TECH schools are aimed at creating a structure that allows students to complete an associate in applied science degree aligned to high-potential jobs.

This alignment is done through industry skills mapping. The skills mapping process and industry participation offer a unique and valuable opportunity to review the degree offering and prerequisites. It is important that the Skills Map influence these offerings and that the six-year Scope & Sequence is current with industry standards.

P-TECH’s Impact

The P-TECH Model addresses postsecondary degree completion and career readiness by fortifying the transitions between high school, college, and the professional world.

Currently the P-TECH Model involves 110 schools across 8 US states and four countries. The Model experienced a rapid growth since its launch in 2010. Just in 2018 alone P-TECH added 40 new schools.

Overall:
-185 graduates to date from most mature schools graduated with both High School Diploma and AAS between 3.5 – 6 years
-First cohort of students graduated at 4x the on-time national community college graduation rate, 5x for low-income students
-23 graduates hired into full-time positions directly after graduating with their AAS

Schools that have not yet finished the model are demonstrating significant early results as well. New York State, for example, launched a cohort of 16 P-TECH schools in 2014. Results from these schools in 2018 (at Year 4 of the six-year model) provided below:

· 95% of the students completed their high school graduation requirements in 4 years. This compares very favorably with the statewide average of 80.4% for 2017-18.
· 29 students already completed an AAS in a STEM field by the end of 4 years, 2 years ahead of schedule.
· Across the board, P-TECH students had already earned an average of 25 college credits by the end of 4 years, placing them in an excellent position to finish their Associate Degrees in under 6 years. The completion rate for SUNY Community Colleges at a comparable point is 12.8%.

These early results demonstrate the value of the P-TECH model and the return on investment for the support of these schools. While there are certainly variations across schools, this is to be expected given the broad scale and diverse communities served by this ambitious initiative. We have demonstrated the flexibility and broad relevance of the model and we continue to learn more about the characteristics of quality implementation and the most effective approaches for support and intervention.

Achievement Summary

· 95% of the students completed their high school graduation requirements in 4 years. This compares very favorably with the statewide average of 80.4% for 2017-18.
· 29 students already completed an AAS in a STEM field by the end of 4 years, 2 years ahead of schedule.
· Across the board, P-TECH students had already earned an average of 25 college credits by the end of 4 years, placing them in an excellent position to finish their Associate Degrees in under 6 years. The completion rate for SUNY Community Colleges at a comparable point is 12.8%.

Webpage Links:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SB0jUhRSp9U
www.ptech.org

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