Title

Embedding Certifications Into Degree Programs

September 17, 2018
 
 

A new report from New America looks at Broward College's successful effort to embed industry certifications into a wide number of degree programs, an approach the think tank says could be a model for other colleges to emulate.

Certifications can pay off in the labor market. But their cost -- typically more than $100 -- often is a barrier for low-income students. And while many colleges embed some certifications into degree programs, New America said these efforts tend to be limited in nature and benefit relatively few students.

Broward, a Florida community college that also offers four-year degrees, has been helped by a state program that reimburses the cost of certification exams for in-demand occupations. But the college stands out, New America found, with 1,349 eligible certifications earned by students last year.

"In contrast to other colleges we interviewed, integrating certifications into degree program is a college-wide priority at Broward, closely tied with other efforts to ensure student success such as guided pathways and career coaching," according to the report. "Certification attainment is measured, rewarded and actively promoted to students, employers and internal college stakeholders."

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