Sector Focused Career Pathways


The Goal of Sector Strategies

The goal is to connect a patchwork of workforce programs around sector-focused career pathways to make more efficient use of limited public resources; provide access to a full range of skill attainment course work for students, job seekers, and incumbent workers; improve labor market outcomes; and meet the needs of regional industries and economies.


Report Author: The California EDGE Coalition

Date: August 2011


This handout describes sector strategies and how they are used as an organizing principle that provides incentives and support for the alignment of workforce, education and economic development policies around major regional industry sectors to address the needs of both businesses and individuals. To learn more, download the full text of the article here.

Core Elements of a Sector-focused Career Pathway Model

  • Dual customer focus on the labor market needs of both business and individuals.
  • Employer engagement by industry sectors or “clusters”, rather than by single employers.
  • Labor market information that is timely and accurate.
  • Collaborative and sustainable partnerships among employers, labor, educational institutions, workforce investment boards, one-stop career centers, adult education providers, and community-based organizations.
  • Programs and curriculum designed around clear pathways with roadmaps that provide coherent course offerings that address the labor “pipeline” needed by industry.

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