Marano Fellows Class of 2012
Name: Rebecca Hartzler

Director, Pathways to Careers


Seattle Community Colleges

Location: Seattle, WA
Industry Sector: Manufacturing, Healthcare, Business Information Technology & Logistics
Type of Organization: Public two-year college district

Organizational Background & Mission: The Pathways to Careers initiative is a collective impact partnership to align effort and investment in increasing training/education completion rates of low-skilled individuals so that they can compete in our region’s labor market for middle wage careers. The partnership, which includes the Seattle Community Colleges, the City of Seattle’s Office of Economic Development, the Bill and Melinda Gates and Seattle Foundations, Seattle Jobs Initiative and SkillUp Washington, met over the course of a year to develop a strategy to double completion rates in four key professional and technical programs across the colleges thereby creating a world-class system of professional education and training that allows all Seattle’s residents access to gain the skills they need to meet labor market demand.

Interest in Sector Work: Pathways to Careers focuses on doubling student completion of education/training pathways in four high demand occupational sectors projected to offer up to 50,000 job openings accessible to middle-skill, middle-wage job seekers over the next decade. The four sectors include Business Technology (anchored at Seattle Central CC), Industrial Skills and Manufacturing (anchored at South Seattle CC), Healthcare (anchored at North Seattle CC), and International Trade/Transportation/ Logistics (anchored at South Seattle CC).

While each pathway has unique features, the core model is to develop career pathways with an entry point accessible to individuals who are likely in need of developmental education. Each pathway will incorporate one or more interim certificate credentials that lead to a certificate and/or associate degree. Students can “step off the path” upon completion of a sequential or “stackable” credential that prepares them for immediate employment, but can easily return for further training at a later date in order to earn a higher certificate or degree. Within the four sectors, faculty and staff across all three colleges will work on revising student recruitment, program acceleration, credit for prior learning, completion, and job placement. Alignment and articulation of curriculum in programs offered across the district will ensure common assessment placement scores, course prerequisites, sequencing, course numbering, credential requirements, and program content.