Key Distinguisher #3: Staffing and Infrastructure
Work-based learning is integrated into the culture and mission of the participating institutions or organizations and this is reflected in staffing, the training of mentors and other professionals engaging with youth, the dedication of physical spaces, and other necessary resources and infrastructure.
Features of Staffing and Infrastructure:
- Work-based learning has champions at multiple levels—from junior staff to senior leadership—who understand the benefits and challenges of implementing a high-quality work-based learning program.
- Staff have industry expertise and/or experience; the ability to leverage existing resources and relationships; and maintain up-to-date knowledge on relevant labor. market data, in-demand skills, and best practices in real-world learning and application
- There are easily accessible credentialing, career readiness, and career advancement resources that can support young people along multiple pathways.
- The adults involved in work-based learning opportunities reflect a variety of lived experiences and receive appropriate training –youth development; diversity, equity, and inclusion, etc.–to support young people in the workplace and advance a culture of inclusivity, personal and professional growth, and other aspects of an environment that is conducive and welcoming to young people.
- Adequate human and financial resources are dedicated to create and maintain partnerships, manage internships and other WBL experiences, ensure young people have access to necessities such as appropriate technology, supervision, and mentorship, and fulfill other essential WBL responsibilities.