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Workforce Preparation & Career Pathways

Kentucky's Top Five Employment Sectors

Kentucky business has many faces. Regardless of size, industry or location, each business plays a key role in creating jobs, sparking innovation and furthering Kentucky’s economy. Due to Kentucky’s location, infrastructure and heritage, several industries find a natural fit here in the Commonwealth. There are numerous career pathways within Kentucky’s five high-demand industry sectors. Learn more about the education and experience needed to get jobs in these sectors, the average pay and the projected number of job openings.

Advanced Manufacturing Industry

Business and IT Services Industry

Construction Industry

Health Care Industry

Transportation and Logistics Industry

Career Pathways Tools

ABE Career Connections: A Manual for Integrating Adult Basic Education into Career Pathways (ABECC) – This manual from OCTAE describes approaches to implementing pathways components, offers examples from the ABECC sites and the challenges they encountered, and provides resources.

Aligning K-12 and Postsecondary Career Pathways with Workforce Needs – This paper summarizes state policymaking activity on this topic as implemented in 13 states.

Bridges to Careers for Low-Skilled Adults: A Program Development Guide – This resource helps practitioners better understand career pathways programs and expand practitioners’ professional knowledge.

Career Pathways Explained: A Strategy to Help Workers and Employers Meet Today’s Job Skill Demands – this presentation from CLASP covers the requirements for establishing career pathways and systems. It also gives examples of how they work.

Career Pathways: Five Ways to Connect College and Careers – The five practices featured in this report from the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce are the beginning of a smart education and career guidance system, offering state examples and tools.

How to Build Bridge Programs that Fit into a Career Pathway – This resource is a step-by-step guide based on the Carreras en Salud program in Chicago.

LINCS Resources for Career Pathways – this LINCS page offers a variety of papers, reports, web sites and toolkits related to WIOA and employment training

National Career Pathways Network – NCPN is an organization dedicated to advancing career pathways, career technical education and related education reform initiatives. Their website features publications, videos and other best practices from around the nation.

A Tool for Sustaining Career Pathways Efforts – This paper outlines key considerations for putting career pathways into operation and provides a checklist of action items that can be used to assess the status of their sustainability efforts.

General Workplace Preparation

Equipped for the Future – EFF standards address communication, decision-making, interpersonal and lifelong learning skills. The EFF framework offers tools to facilitate the EFF approach to teaching, learning, and assessing for program improvement.

National Skills Coalition – “National Skills Coalition is a broad-based coalition working toward a vision of an America that grows its economy by investing in its people so that every worker and every industry has the skills to compete and prosper.” Their website offers information on federal and state policy, national initiatives, news, resources and events.


Contact Lori Looney at or call (502) 892-3029.


Information on WIOA.

Access the KY Skills U Employability Standards.