develop student-centered, anti-oppressive employability skills framework – Oct 7
Posted by Opportunity Network on September 20, 2022
Opportunity Network invites proposals to develop student-centered, anti-oppressive employability skills framework
Since 2003, the Opportunity Network (OppNet) has worked to ignite the drive, curiosity, and agency of historically and systematically underrepresented students on their paths to and through college and into thriving careers. This year, OppNet will reach more than 10,000 students of color across the nation to support them in achieving their college and career goals through a direct-service Fellows Program that works with students from the summer before 11th grade through to college graduation; Career Fluency® Partnerships, a community capacity-building program that works with schools, youth-serving nonprofits, and corporations to build their capacity to amplify college and career outcomes; and Opportunity Ignited, advisory services to corporations seeking to embed values of diversity, equity, and inclusion in their businesses.
OppNet has released a request for proposals for developing a student-centered, anti-oppressive employability skills framework as it is working to create a first-of-its-kind employability framework and aligned measure tool that consists of human-centric (AI-proof), cross-sector, in-demand employability skills with individual and collective employability assets for students. In this ~year-long project, OppNet will engage a research practitioner who can take the framework it has already developed and elevate it to integrate additional employability assets unique to and/or prevalent in first-generation communities of color that are known to correlate with career readiness and/or workforce entry and advancement. These employability assets will be gathered through primary research with young people of color in OppNet’s community.
This project will address the following institutional and field-wide needs and goals:
1) OppNet (and the career development field at large) has no systematic, standardized, longitudinal method for identifying young people’s employability assets at baseline (program entry), at regular intervals throughout the program, and at program completion.
2) The field at large has historically been unable to create a framework for employability that honors both the needs of employers and the unique employability assets of young first-generation college-going people of color.
3) OppNet has used imperfect proxies to assess its fellows’ program’s ultimate outcome: students secure a post-graduate opportunity in their field of interest that matches their talents, passions, and ambitions. OppNet seeks a tool that will enable staff and students to evaluate this multi-layered outcome with improved validity.
4) OppNet (and the field) needs to increase the student-centeredness and asset-based orientation of its career guidance and exposure work. A detailed framework (resulting from this project), which fellows will use to articulate and evaluate their “employability”/career readiness, and, when used in combination with OppNet’s existing tools, which source students’ professional goals, will: equip OppNet’s Career Success staff with highly nuanced information about a student’s employability assets, which may be used to recruit internship partners and match students with ‘best fit’ summer internships; enrich students’ understanding of their employability assets; and equip students with the language they may use to convey their employability assets to prospective employers with clarity and specificity.
For this next investment stage in OppNet’s Employability Framework project, the practitioner OppNet engages will take the framework already developed and elevate it to integrate additional employability assets gathered through primary research with young people of color in OppNet’s community. This partner will engage fellows, fellows alumni, and partner students through focus groups, interviews, workshops, surveys, or similar methods to surface competencies unique to and/or prevalent in first-generation communities of color that correlate with career readiness and/or workforce entry and advancement.
Grants of up to $175,000 will be awarded to the selected research practitioner, and up to $40,000 will be awarded for student compensation for their participation in this project.
Given the geographical spread of young people in the OppNet community, it is open to in-person and/or virtual activities in pursuit of our project goals. If in-person activities best achieve the project’s goals, those activities will take place in NYC.
There is an open question period until September 23, 2022, and applicants are asked to email questions to Katherine Hanson, associate director of decision science, at email@example.com.
For complete program guidelines and application instructions, see the OppNet website.
Deadline: October 7, 2022
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