New ACE Project to Enhance Apprenticeship Pathways to Employment
October 15, 2020

​​​​​​​​​​​​Higher education partners will receive support to articulate apprenticeship credits into degree programs

ACE announced today it will add apprenticeships to its already significant learning evaluations portfolio and will work to improve postsecondary and workforce connections for these programs.

Supported by a generous grant from the Charles Koch Foundation, the ACE Apprenticeship Pathways Project will link employers and higher education institutions as part of an active network and help them connect apprenticeships with career and educational opportunities to help learners achieve their goals, employers meet their talent needs, and higher education institutions increase enrollment.

“This partnership comes at an opportune time. Expanding recognized apprenticeships is an exciting opportunity to leverage ACE’s expertise at translating experience and learning across contexts and align expectations for quality postsecondary credentials,” said ACE President Ted Mitchell. “The importance of this work cannot be overstated, given the current need to strengthen the nation’s workforce to meet current and future labor market needs.”  

To achieve these goals, ACE will evaluate selected apprenticeship programs for college credit recommendations and workplace competencies based on input from postsecondary schools and employers. The results of these evaluations will then be represented in ACE-endorsed badges and transcripts on Credly’s Acclaim online platform​.

The $1 million, two-year project will kick off with a convening of higher education institutions, employers, and other professional and educational stakeholders to identify gaps between the apprenticeship programs and the intended audience for their credentials. Then, ACE will develop an evaluation process specific to apprenticeships and design and conduct evaluations for 10 apprenticeship programs, creating a set of exhibits to represent student capabilities to employers and colleges.

Finally, ACE will work with stakeholders to identify how the credential issued to learners can be used to help students transition into jobs or other educational opportunities.

“As job prospects increasingly emerge in fields where there are a lot of demonstrable, measurable skills, the higher education community is eager to adapt,” said Louis Soares, ACE chief learning and innovation officer. “We hope that providing an industry standard process for apprenticeship programs will allow more people to succeed outside of the more formal college setting.”

“We are excited to enhance our partnership with ACE by supporting the Apprenticeship Pathways Project,” said Charles Koch Foundation Executive Director Ryan Stowers. “Learning today happens alongside work and life, and ACE is constantly looking for new ways to provide learner-centric programs to students. This project will allow individuals to take advantage of accelerated employment options while earning credit that will unlock future opportunities for education.”

To learn more about how institutions and employers can participate in the Apprenticeship ​Pathways Project, email

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Audrey Hamilton
Telephone:(202) 939-9353

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