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EDUCATION PHILANTHROPY DIVISION OF ASCENDIUM EDUCATION GROUP

Resource Library

Sharing knowledge is at the heart of our mission. Explore Ascendium’s growing library of publications that examine the complex challenges facing postsecondary learners, and how we’re helping our partners address them.

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Association of Public and Land-grant Universities

Future Opportunities for Rural Workforce and Rural Development (FORWARD) Curriculum

January 2023
Cooperative Extension professionals (CEPs) are embedded within many communities across the U.S. This curriculum was created to help CEPs leverage their experience and serve as facilitators of workforce solutions in rural communities. Using this curriculum will help them work with community stakeholders to design and implement career pathways that lead learners and workers from low-income backgrounds to in-demand jobs in rural places.
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Rural Matters
Rural Matters

Driving Economic Mobility Through Rural Education (Part II)

December 2022
The second in a four-part podcast series, representatives from Patrick & Henry Community College and the Aspen Institute College Excellence Program expand on the importance of community college partnerships that put the focus on crafting regional economic solutions. When community colleges establish partnerships with four-year institutions and local and regional employers, high-quality postsecondary education can be developed in alignment with local job needs. This creates economic opportunity for learners, especially those from low-income backgrounds.
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LISC resource
Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC)

Rural Works Highlights Report: Year 2

September 2022
Rural Works, an initiative of Rural Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), focuses on community-wide workforce development programming to support more rural workers. This report shares insights from the initiative’s second year, including expansion into more rural communities and the addition of growing workforce partnerships.
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Rural Matters
Rural Matters

Strengthening Educational and Professional Outcomes in Rural Communities (Part I)

September 2022
The first in a four part podcast series, five guests on this Rural Matters episode speak to timely issues in rural postsecondary education. This includes how to achieve better opportunities and outcomes, utilize meaningful partnerships and create pathways to education and career success. Leveraging the unique assets of rural communities, these partners elevate rural America as a viable place to live, learn and work.
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RuralLearningSystems2
Columbus Learning Center Management Corporation

Rural Learning Systems: Regional Collaborative Changing Systems for Adults in Northern California

August 2022
ProjectAttain! is a partner in the Rural Learning Systems cohort, collaborating with colleges, employers and a workforce board to improve educational attainment for adults in rural Northern California. This article details how the nonprofit is working with CivicLab to strengthen their partnerships so that more individuals with some college or skills training can achieve a credential or degree.
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RuralLearningSystems
Columbus Learning Center Management Corporation

Rural Learning Systems: Improving Economic Opportunity in Rural Taos County

August 2022
The Taos Education Collaborative (TEC), a partner in the Rural Learning Systems cohort, is spotlighted in this article by CivicLab. TEC brings businesses, educators and community organizations to the table to develop a homegrown workforce. Other rural communities can learn from TEC’s work to build stronger educational pipelines and clearer, better aligned pathways for postsecondary attainment and socioeconomic mobility.
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UofMReport
University of Montana

Categorization of Place-based, Postsecondary Learning Experiences for Rural Students

July 2022
Place-based learning is an outside-the-box approach to curriculum design. It integrates local and regional cultures, history and resources into educational curricula, making it a good fit for rural learners. It encourages them to be more engaged in postsecondary education by making it relevant to their lives and their communities. This resource includes case study profiles of rural institutions and how they utilize place-based learning programs.
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PreparingRuralAmericans
The Conference Board

Preparing Rural Americans for the Postpandemic Economy: Lessons from Utah

June 2022
Rural communities face different labor market challenges than urban areas. However, there are opportunities for significant change as the U.S. emerges from the pandemic. This brief from The Conference Board looks at labor market challenges and solutions for rural America, using rural Utah as a case study.
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Rural Matters
Rural Matters

Diving Into Place-Based Education Programs (Part VI)

June 2022
The final installment in a six-part series, this Rural Matters podcast episode highlights place-based education programs, particularly how they can benefit rural learners and communities. Place-based learning involves engaging the community, which can help make college learning more accessible, relevant and motivating to first-generation learners and learners from low-income backgrounds.
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Rural Educator Academy Background
Community Colleges of the Appalachia Region

Rural Educator Academy Background, Brief and Core Competencies

June 2022
Created by The Community Colleges of Appalachia, the Rural Educator Academy (REA) is a unique, two-pronged approach to professional development for rural postsecondary educators. Through REA, a community of practice has formed to identify ways leaders can improve student success for learners from low-income backgrounds while also focusing on equity. A curriculum for training will be produced from the REA professional development program.
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Rural Matters
Rural Matters

The Importance of Digital Skills and Leadership in Rural Postsecondary Education (Part V)

May 2022
The fifth in a six-part podcast series, this Rural Matters episode features a discussion with leaders of two organizations working with rural community colleges to prepare students for the digital economy. These organizations focus their work on helping rural college leaders to understand and use data so that they can identify barriers faced by learners from low-income backgrounds and create equitable pathways to career success.
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Center on Rural Innovation

Rural America’s Tech Employment Landscape: How to Increase Tech Talent and Tech Employment

May 2022
Two national surveys, a labor market data analysis and more than 50 interviews have culminated in the release of this Center on Rural Innovation report on tech employment in rural America. The report provides knowledge and recommendations to policymakers, funders, training providers and leaders at local and national levels around how to address the supply of and demand for tech talent in rural communities.
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