A new national center will study the link between postsecondary education and the workforce using a five-year grant from the federal Institute of Education Sciences.
The Community College Research Center (CCRC) at Teachers College, Columbia University will collaborate with scholars at the University of Michigan, Harvard, Stanford, the City University of New York and the University of North Carolina.
The Center for Analysis of Postsecondary Education and Employment, or CAPSEE, will study:
(1) relatively short-term occupational degrees (occupational associate degrees and certificates or diplomas) that are designed to improve labor market outcomes; (2) non-credit workforce programs that now enroll millions of students and play an important (but under-investigated) workforce development role; (3) the burgeoning for-profit sector; and (4) the trajectory of earnings growth after college (or even occurring simultaneously with college).
The center’s 12 research projects will use data from five partner states, North Carolina, Michigan, Ohio, Virginia, and Florida.
One project will try to determine the effectiveness of job retraining programs at Ohio community and technical colleges. Another will look at whether working undermines students’ success in college.
A Michigan research team will evaluate the state’s No Worker Left Behind (NWLB) program, which aims to draw laid-off or marginally employed workers back to school to obtain credentials in high-demand fields.
North Carolina’s One-Stop Career Centers located on community college campuses will be the focus of another study.