Business Management / Entrepreneurship
Students in the EKY Student Success Pipeline (EKYSSP) will have access to trajectory-shifting academic and wraparound supports to both achieve an associate degree and earn a stackable industry transition by Year 13. Through internship placements and pathway coursework, students will transition seamlessly to a high-opportunity local career, creating momentum for generational economic mobility. Through a collective impact, community-rooted approach, the EKYSSP will serve “near-miss” Appalachian students whose identities are currently underrepresented in high-demand local career fields.
The Kentucky design team is working to serve as a rural education accelerator proof point, ultimately providing more than 12,200 rural students across 35 schools in 12 districts access to flexible, credit-bearing general education coursework. This will be achieved through strengthening existing local dual credit and enrollment partnerships, as well as leveraging online programs. All students in the EKYSSP will have the opportunity to obtain an associate degree and stackable workforce credential by the end of their 13th year in healthcare, cybersecurity, or business management/entrepreneurship.
Organizations / Entities Represented on Design Team
Teach For America Appalachia
Harlan Independent Schools
The Floyd County School of Innovation
Big Sandy Community and Technical College
Wiley Advancement Courses
Prosper Appalachia and the Prosper Appalachia Youth Advisory Council
The Thompson Scholar Foundation
The Foundation for Appalachian Kentucky
I want to stay in my hometown more than anything, but I’m not sure what jobs are available or how to get the training I need to get one
- High School Sophomore
Recognizing the unique challenges faced by students in the region, the Kentucky design team is building out a robust set of supports to ensure student success in pathway opportunities. Near-peer mentors and coaches will support students through bi-weekly 1:1 check-ins, data monitoring, and a bi-annual evaluation led by the Prosper Appalachia Student Advisory Council that includes caregivers, teachers, and extracurricular supporters. Mentors and coaches will also create content and be featured in social media and marketing campaigns to raise awareness of and participation in EKYSSP engagement opportunities
The team plans to advocate for local workforce boards to fund new pathway course equipment and instructors in high-need fields. This effort will include building coalitions with the Eastern Kentucky Concentrated Employment Program, the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, and the Kentucky Council for Postsecondary Education.
The team will also advocate for waivers for expanded student access to scholarships, including expanding scholarship access and eligibility to additional grade levels through partnerships with the Kentucky Department of Education and the Kentucky Council for Postsecondary Education.