Career Academies: Investing in Students, the Workforce and Career Technical Education

Career academies are a proven way of delivering high-quality Career Technical Education (CTE). Through small learning communities, college-preparatory curriculum and strong partnerships with local employers, career academies offer work-based learning opportunities and rigorous pathways to postsecondary education and careers. Research strongly supports the efficacy of career academies in increasing the academic success, attendance levels and future earning potential of participating students.

This brief provides a common definition of career academies, describes their history and outlines research supporting these dynamic institutions, providing examples from national, state and local career academy-related efforts along the way. This is a useful resource for states that are looking to expand high-quality, dynamic CTE programs through individual career academies. 

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May 2013