Many community college students are interested in pursuing degrees and certificates in information technology (IT) to enter into well-paying, high-demand careers. Yet little is known about how students navigate the many program and career options available to them. This project explores the decision-making process of students in two-year technician programs.

The research has been conducted in partnership with Ivy Tech Community College in Indiana, which offers an associate degree and two certificates in IT. The project focuses on how students’ experiences and information resources influence their decision-making, based on student surveys, in-depth interviews, analysis of administrative records and site visits.

The project’s findings will be useful to students, education professionals and policy makers committed to increasing student success in advanced technical programs and meeting the demand for a middle skills workforce. The research is funded by the National Science Foundation Advanced Technological Education program.


For more information, contact PI: Michelle Van Noy, Director, Rutgers, Education and Employment Research Center,

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