Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon Portland Community College

Academic and Career Pathways

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Academic and Career Pathways Framework

Inspired by the early successes of the national “Pathways” movement in community colleges (AACC Pathways Project), PCC has committed to developing our own holistic pathways model. The approach can best be described as an organizing principle to improve student outcomes by shifting the way we group and offer academic programs and by meaningfully integrating student guidance and support through pathway completion.

The following six Academic and Career Pathways were created to help guide students as they explore and commit to their academic and career goals:

  • Arts, Humanities, Communication, and Design
  • Healthcare and Emergency Professions
  • Business and Entrepreneurship
  • Construction, Manufacturing Technology, and Transportation
  • Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM)
  • Public Service, Education, and Social Sciences

Academic and Career Pathways Implementation Design teams composed of faculty, advisors, student support practitioners, and systems support specialists supported the development and continuous improvement of this model during the Academic and Career Pathways Implementation Design Process. Also, the academic and student affairs organizational structure is being changed to reflect a Pathways operating model. Faculty, advisors, and support specialists will collaborate to create meaningful student learning and experiences in and outside of the classroom. These Pathway teams will make PCC academic paths clearer, help students enter a path, support students to stay on their path, and ensure student learning and personal development.

PCC’s YESS reform activities can be mapped to these four pillars of the Pathway model. Additional strategies will continue to be identified and prioritized as we collectively come to better understand what does and does not work to support success for our diverse students.

Guided pathways pillars graphic

View full-sized Guided Pathways graphic »

See text description of Guided Pathways graphic
  • Clarifying and mapping pathways to student end goals
    • Academic pathways
    • Program maps
    • Developmental education and gateway course redesign
    • General education redesign
    • Academic planning (EAB technology)
    • Onramps for “pre-credit” students
    • Labor market and sector info
    • Transfer partnerships
  • Helping students choose and enter a program pathway
    • Strategic enrollment management
    • New student onboarding
    • Onramps for “pre-credit” students
    • First-year experience
    • Career exploration and advising “pathway” decisions
    • Developmental education and gateway course redesign
  • Helping students stay on their path
    • Assigned advisors (caseload and holistic)
    • Strategic course scheduling and annual schedules
    • Coordinated student case management (EAB technology)
    • Academic planning (EAB technology)
    • Early alert and coordinated care networks
    • Momentum points
    • Pathway to Opportunity (affordability and basic needs)
  • Ensuring students are learning
    • General education redesign
    • Culturally and diversity responsive teaching
    • Learning assessment
    • Program review redesign
    • Applied learning opportunities
    • Labor market and skills needs

Academic and Career Pathways Implementation Design Process

The Academic and Career Pathways Implementation Design Process focused on voice and collaboration across all college areas, roles, and Pathways to ensure an inclusive and student-centered design.  Learn more about this unique process and outcomes »

The Advising Redesign Initiative

Redesigning the academic advising model is one of the most significant reform efforts that the college has engaged in to improve equitable student success. Learn more about the Advising Redesign Initiative »

Connect with us

Submit your questions to yess-group@pcc.edu.