Rutgers Education and Employment Research Center (EERC) and the National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB) have worked since 2010 to implement the Adult College Completion Initiative (ACC) for adult learners. The overarching goal of this initiative is to shift policies and practices within states’ workforce development systems towards promoting college completion as a short-term training option for clients. A parallel goal is to conduct research to determine what difference adult college completion makes for both client and performance outcomes in the workforce system.
ACC aims to increase the number of workers holding Associate’s or Bachelor’s degrees. Research shows that over a fifth (22 percent) of adults nationwide have completed some college courses, but have not finished a degree, and that workers who have degrees fare better in the labor market. To date, Rutgers’ EERC and NAWB have targeted four states: Pennsylvania, Indiana, Mississippi, and Oklahoma. States and local areas participating in the initiative have taken different approaches to determining eligibility for short-term training funds. To be eligible for funding, an individual who has not previously completed an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree, and who wishes to do so, must have 15 or fewer, or 30 or fewer (depending on his or her location) credits remaining to complete a degree. EERC and NAWB have implemented the Adult College Completion Initiative with funding from the Lumina Foundation for Education. The Lumina Foundation is an independent, private foundation committed to increasing the proportion of Americans who have received a high-quality, college-level education. The foundation's goal is to increase the proportion of Americans with college degrees, certificates and credentials significantly by 2025. More information on the Lumina Foundation’s mission and goals can be found here.
Adult College Completion (ACC) can be seamlessly integrated into the workforce development system to help states improve employment outcomes for adults in local workforce areas. ACC puts new practices and policies in place that result in systematic identification of workforce investment clients who are near college completion, the availability of key transitional supports for those clients seeking to complete their degrees, and routine assessments as to whether such clients can receive Workforce Investment Act (WIA) funding, the soon to be offered Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) funding, or other types of available funding to complete college.
This website is intended to inform Workforce Development staff and higher education personnel interested in working with them of tools they can use to encourage college completion in their respective workforce areas.
The portal will help you:
identify compelling reasons for your clients to attain a degree
identify seven key steps for implementing or broadening adult college completion in your center
assist case managers or counselors in finding strategies for advising and working with interested adult learners
understand how the Adult College Completion Initiative fits into your Individual Training Account (ITA) financing system
reflect on lessons learned from the implementation and research we conducted in four pilot states
provide you with answers to frequently asked questions about our implementation and research
Meet The Team
The Rutgers' Education & Employment Research Center (EERC) team has extensive expertise in research and implementation in various areas, including state and federal workforce development systems, online learning, community colleges, workplace literacy, sector strategies, reentry strategies and workforce development. [read more]
The National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB) team provides comprehensive educational and technical assistance services which help local workforce boards and workforce centers to make informed, smart decisions about how to invest in workforce strategies that align with the needs of their communities. [read more]
The Lumina Foundation
EERC and NAWB have implemented the Adult College Completion Initiative with funding from the Lumina Foundation for Education. The Lumina Foundation is an independent, private foundation committed to increasing the proportion of Americans who have received a high-quality, college-level education. The foundation's goal is to increase the proportion of Americans with college degrees, certificates and credentials significantly by 2025. More information on the Lumina Foundation’s mission and goals can be found here.