Career Foundations

Career Foundations

TEL Library’s Career Foundations program is an education curriculum that prepares adults of all ages for middle-skill jobs and promotes continued professional growth after employment. The program offers turnkey preparation for professional and financial growth through middle-skill jobs, as well as opportunities for continued postsecondary education toward advanced certificates or Associate’s degrees in Health Science, Information Technology, or Business and Manufacturing.

The Career Foundations curriculum is designed entirely within workplace situations and tasks. In addition, this applied-learning framework gives participants the academic, literacy, and skills foundations they need. Ours curriculum provides a unique blend of soft-skill, technical, and academic training in three course areas: Business Writing and Communication, Business Math and Computing Skills, and Business Essentials. Each of these courses offers between 100-120 hours of learning (the equivalent of a 3-hour college course, or 9 total hours for the program), and can be delivered for independent, self-paced learning or in blended learning environments. If you would like to learn more, download our Career Foundations white paper.

Through the program and TEL Library’s Career Foundations curriculum, participants will benefit by:

  • Developing critical professional and soft skills, as well as literacy and numeracy abilities to qualify for middle-skill jobs and careers in the 21st century
  • Receiving a verified certificate recognized by potential employers
  • Participating in career mentoring and employment counseling
  • Having the option of receiving college credit and pursuing designated postsecondary study pathways for advanced certificates or Associate’s degrees.
The Career Foundations Pilot Program

 As a first step toward broad release of the Career Foundations program, TEL Library is partnering with select rehabilitation and correctional centers to pilot the curriculum. In this pilot phase, participants will spend 24 weeks developing the requisite communication, math, computing, and business skills for career development and professional success.

Our pilot program is offered for free to participating organizations and is designed as a partnership between TEL Library and participating organizations, each with a mission to improve the lives of young adults and adults through their respective programs. TEL Library’s goal is to supplement the important missions of our partner organizations by offering an education program that recognizes the specific needs of adult learners in correctional and rehabilitation centers, and that provides hope by expanding participants’ personal and professional horizons.

Pilot partner organizations in the program benefit by:

  • Developing a validated educational program designed for participants looking to secure higher paying jobs and career pathways
  • Participating in qualitative and quantitative research related to the efficacy of postsecondary education in correctional and rehabilitation centers
  • Creating a network for organizational volunteers through the Volunteer Mentor program
  • Expanding organizational brand awareness through co-promotional activities with TEL Library

Read our whitepaper on the Career Foundations model.

Research Program Release Timeline

We will spend the next ten months piloting TEL Library’s Career Foundations program in rehabilitation, correctional, and crisis centers. Our goals in this pilot phase are to:

  • Measure the effectiveness of our soft skills training
  • Refine our portfolio model to ensure that participants are providing employers with concrete evidence of their ability to excel in middle-skill jobs
  • Elaborate the curriculum based on participant and mentor feedback to ensure that our workplace-contextualization is engaging and aligned properly with career education goals
  • Conduct research, using anonymous data provided voluntarily by participants, to gain deeper insights into what learning strategies work best in the specific context of adult learners in correctional centers and/or drug and alcohol rehabilitation programs
  • Build out a mature volunteer mentor model and framework that will allow us to scale our curriculum through diverse organizations and institutional partnerships
  • Study the best ways to adapt the Career Foundations curriculum to diverse delivery formats, including self-paced online, self-paced print, fixed-term cohort programs with online materials, and fixed-term cohort programs with print materials

We plan to launch the Career Foundations curriculum nationwide in May 2019. At that time, we expect to offer the curriculum both for certificate and college credit through our credit-granting partner. As with our other products, our goal is to make Career Foundations a highly effective and the most affordable middle-skills training available for adult learners.