Linking Learning to Careers Demonstration: Impacts 24 Months After Enrollment

Linking Learning to Careers Demonstration: Impacts 24 Months After Enrollment

Published: Aug 19, 2021
Publisher: Mathematica
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Associated Project

Evaluation of the Vermont Linking Learning to Careers Model

Time frame: 2017-2021

Prepared for:

Vermont Division of Vocational Rehabilitation

Authors

Kathleen Feeney

Emily Peterson

Key Findings
  • LLC had a large impact on service use in the two years after youth enrolled, particularly services that LLC intended to offer (such as work-based learning experiences, assistive technology, postsecondary education, and certain preemployment transition services).
  • LLC had a large positive impact on enrollment in postsecondary education, with 31 percent of LLC participants having enrolled in postsecondary education programs (compared with 22 percent of control group members).
  • LLC did not affect employment for all participants within the first 24 months of program enrollment, but it did increase the likelihood of earnings among later enrollees by 11 percentage points. Factors for the lack of consistent impacts could include many youth having worked before enrollment, most youth still attending high school 24 months after enrollment, or the LLC model not being sufficiently different from usual services.

The Linking Learning to Careers (LLC) program offered high school students with disabilities an individualized and targeted approach to strategically plan for their futures. The Vermont Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) designed LLC to build on its usual services for high school students to emphasize unpaid and paid work-based learning experiences (WBLEs) in integrated environments, college exploration and coursework opportunities at the Community College of Vermont, team-based guidance and support from DVR staff, dedicated support for assistive technology, and additional transportation funding. To support a rigorous evaluation, DVR relied on a randomized controlled trial design, recruiting 803 participants to participate. This report presents evidence on LLC’s impacts up to two years after students enrolled in the program. The demonstration had impacts on services and education that were consistent with the LLC model and findings from the implementation evaluation. However, the program did not have consistent impacts on employment.

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