Credential Engine Announces Major New Investment in Los Angeles Credential Data Collaborative

Credential Transparency Set to Expand in the Golden State

March 03, 2020

Today, Credential Engine announced a major new grant from ECMC Foundation to both continue its work advancing credential transparency in Los Angeles County as well as expand its efforts across the state. The Los Angeles Credential Data Collaborative will build off of the credential transparency momentum already active in fourteen states and will work to bring clarity to the credential marketplace by providing access to common, comparable credential data that will help increase postsecondary credential attainment rates, align industry needs with training, signal quality credentials to learners, and spur economic development.

“Shining a spotlight on the confusing credential marketplace will be invaluable for students, workers, businesses, and postsecondary institutions across the Los Angeles region, so I am so glad that ECMC Foundation is making this important investment in our work with UNITE-LA to get that done,” said Scott Cheney, Executive Director of Credential Engine. “There is growing momentum across the country to make credential transparency a reality and this work will help keep Los Angeles at the cutting edge.”

“As the economy continues to evolve and new postsecondary education options emerge, it is imperative that learners have access to transparent information about their credential options,” said Jennifer Zeisler, Senior Program Director of Career Readiness, ECMC Foundation. “We are proud to support the implementation phase of Credential Engine’s efforts to build a robust database of credential data that will benefit students, educators and the public at large, and arm learners with the knowledge to make an informed decision about their education.” 

The Los Angeles Credential Data Collaborative will work to publish rich information about credentials—starting in community colleges in Los Angeles County. With an initial focus around credentials in high-demand sectors, the work plans to scale across providers and to the surrounding regions to support the state’s rapidly growing need for workers in a number of fields.

“UNITE-LA has been proudly partnering with Credential Engine since 2018 to bring credential transparency and literacy to L.A. We understand the critical need for the public—especially prospective students and employers—to easily access the information they need about all available credentials in the region,” said David Rattray, President & CEO, UNITE-LA. “We are excited to expand our work with Credential Engine. In doing so, we are confident we are building a better L.A. workforce and ultimately a stronger L.A. economy.”

This work will seek to scale work with key state education partners with an ultimate goal to get critical education and training information into the hands of students, job-seekers, disconnected youth, and others who need it.

“The work kicked off by our partners in Southern California will provide us with a solid foundation we can use to scale better connectivity between credential data statewide,” said Eloy Ortiz Oakley, Chancellor of the California Community Colleges. “By empowering students and workers with clearer information about the options, we can change the game in how we provide opportunities for upward mobility for millions of Californians."

Funding from ECMC Foundation will support the development of materials and resources for the project, staff time for planning and project management, outreach to and technical assistance for two year institutions, as well as the development of a user application that utilizes the data in the Registry to help students navigate their education and training opportunities. Credential Engine will partner with UNITE-LA on the project.

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Credential Engine is a non-profit whose mission is to create credential transparency, reveal the credential marketplace, increase credential literacy, and empower everyone to make more informed decisions about credentials and their value. Credential Engine receives support from Lumina Foundation, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Walmart, Northrop Grumman Foundation, ECMC Foundation, Microsoft, the National Science Foundation, Siegel Family Endowment, and Google.org.

Contact: Carrie Samson csamson@credentialengine.org

Based in Los Angeles, ECMC Foundation is a national foundation working to improve postsecondary outcomes for students from underserved backgrounds. It is one of several affiliates under the ECMC Group enterprise based in Minneapolis, which together work to help students succeed. The Foundation makes investments in two focus areas: College Success and Career Readiness; and uses a spectrum of funding structures, including strategic grantmaking and program-related investments, to fund both nonprofit and for-profit ventures.

Contact: Mai Tran mtran@ecmc.org

Over the past 20 years, UNITE-LA has been a trusted business intermediary, dedicated to supporting the development of an effective local public education system, so that all children and youth succeed in college, career and beyond. Through the intersection of programming, policy, and systems change efforts, UNITE-LA works to increase access to high-quality early childhood education, develop career pathways in high-growth industries, improve college access and success, and ensure workforce readiness, especially for individuals with high barriers into the workforce. Visit www.unitela.com.

Contact: Claudine Battisti, 213.325.1508 (O) / 717.884.6807 (C)


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