Credential Engine Partners with Kansas, Michigan, and Ohio to Increase Credential Transparency

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Credential Engine announced today new partnerships with three states to bring credential transparency, develop credential literacy, improve alignment between credential offerings and outcomes, and inform state practices, programs, and policies by harnessing data that helps students, workers, and citizens make strategic credentialing decisions. Through a competitive process, proposals from Kansas, Michigan, and Ohio have been chosen to work with Credential Engine over the coming year as part of their state’s strategic education, workforce, and economic development efforts. In conjunction with additional partnerships, Credential Engine is currently engaging with nine states across the country.

Launched in 2016, Credential Engine is a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating credential transparency, revealing the credential marketplace, increasing credential literacy, and empowering everyone to make more informed decisions about credentials and their value. “To prepare for the future of work, states are facing increased pressure to better understand and align credentialing options to growing sectors of the economy,” says Scott Cheney, Executive Director of Credential Engine. “Currently, students and workers, employers, educators, and states cannot accurately search and compare information about credentials—creating confusion and frustration for all concerned.” To meet these challenges, Credential Engine has created a common credentialing language, a web-based Registry to store data on all types of credentials, and an open platform for customized discovery and differentiation applications. With transparency and credential comparability as a common thread among them, each state will utilize these tools and services in order to meet their unique economic and educational needs.

Led by the Board of Regents (KBOR), Kansas will publish all active degrees, certificates, and short-term technical programs offered by the public postsecondary schools in the state with the goal of increasing visibility and comparison across state lines. Further, they will use the Registry to articulate credit for military experience and to indicate high-demand, high-wage credentials.

“One of the primary goals of the Kansas Board of Regents is to help Kansas families and businesses, and by extension our state’s economy,” said KBOR President and CEO, Blake Flanders. “This partnership with Credential Engine will help achieve that goal by providing another source of valuable information for students, families, and employers as they make decisions about their futures.”

In Michigan, the Talent Investment Agency (TIA)—the state’s primary workforce development office—will focus on publishing credentials related to healthcare, information technology and computer science, manufacturing, business, and other professional trades to support the Governor’s Marshall Plan for Talent. By completing this project, they will be able to better identify and map career pathways and expand Registered Apprenticeships in these high demand sectors in Michigan. Additionally, they will integrate credential data from the Registry into their free Career Pathfinder tool

(https://pathfinder.mitalent.org), enabling students and jobseekers to access more complete information about career pathways and training options.

“Our partnership with Credential Engine is an important part of supporting Governor Rick Snyder’s Marshall Plan for Talent,” Stephanie Beckhorn, TIA’s Senior Deputy Director for Workforce Development, said. “A big part of Gov. Snyder’s vision includes broadening the educational mindset to include lifelong learning and highlighting the joint role played by employers and educators. The ability that this program gives us to publish credentials in our highest-demand career fields will make planning a career path much easier for students and jobseekers.”

The Buckeye State’s efforts will be led by the Ohio Department of Higher Education, with help from its stakeholder partners. There, they will coordinate publishing data about credentials in the information technology and cybersecurity sectors. In doing so, they aim to reveal the labor market value of credential options, strengthen pathways from secondary career technical education to postsecondary credentials, inform policy used for career and education advising in all Ohio secondary schools, and help ensure veterans are receiving proper credit for military training.

“Through this work with Credential Engine, we look forward to capturing the credentials in the IT and cybersecurity sectors in an effort to support statewide priorities and strategies for these in-demand fields, said Ohio Department of Higher Education Chancellor John Carey. “We look forward to working with each of these states,” said Cheney. “By helping reveal their credential marketplaces, more closely connect credential data to the larger education and workforce landscapes, and provide real-time update capabilities, we believe that these states will not only be prepared to meet the education and training challenges of today, but set up better systems to ensure long-term stability and prosperity for their economies and citizens.”

This yearlong project will kick off in June, 2018 and is supported by JP Morgan Chase & Co. For more about this state work, please visit the resources below:

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Credential Engine is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the mission of promoting transparency and credential literacy in the marketplace to reveal the world of credentials and inform the public.

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