Key Initiative

Industry Certification Education & Performance Data System Initiative

In 2016, the National Student Clearinghouse, in partnership with the National Association of Manufacturers and the U.S. Census Bureau, launched a project to collect, report, match, aggregate, and analyze records on credit and non-credit education, industry certifications, and employment and earnings. Work focuses on four distinct but complementary tasks: 1) formatting/reporting of attainment records from industry certification providers; 2) formatting/reporting of non-credit course data from state community college systems; 3) matching of credit and non-credit education and certification data and analysis of those matched records to determine combinations of credentials and common education pathways; and 4) matching/analysis of combined education/certification records with employment and earnings data (and the aggregation of that data to meet disclosure requirements). As part of this fourth task, the Census Bureau matches education records with a set of employment, earnings, and demographic data sets available at that agency. It creates a series of aggregate-level reports on the impact of education and credential attainment on labor market outcomes. Data sets expected to be available from the Census Bureau include UI Wage Records from the Longitudinal Employer–Household Dynamics (LEHD) program, W-2 and 1099 tax records from the Internal Revenue Service, population demographics from the decennial census, and employer demographics from the economic census.

This works has continued with the Clearinghouse analyzing the geographical impacts of wages – how  wage levels correspond to geographical location. The initiative examines the types and sizes of employers for this population that are included in the data, in order to understand what types of employers are hiring entry-level manufacturing workers. The program is focusing on assessing retention in the industry over time.; i.e., are workers staying in the manufacturing industry after earning credentials  and what does the path forward look like? The Clearinghouse aims to expand the work to other industries. This requires getting additional credentialing bodies on board to partner with the Clearinghouse and the Census Bureau.

Partners: National Student Clearinghouse, National Association of Manufacturers, Workcred, U.S. Census Bureau

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