Driving Innovation: Evaluation Findings from the First Five Years of Shifting Gears
In 2007, the Joyce Foundation launched Shifting Gears, a state policy initiative designed to promote regional economic growth by improving the education and skills training of the workforce in six Midwestern states. These states-Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin-were tasked to create more seamless pathways to postsecondary credentials and good jobs for lower-skilled adults. CLASP played a key role in Shifting Gears as the managing intermediary of the overall initiative and the primary provider of technical assistance.
The Shifting Gears initiative was ambitious and one of the first multi-state postsecondary education projects to require states to embark on a process of collaborative and systemic change. A recently released evaluation report, Strengthening State Systems for Adult Learners: An Evaluation of the First Five Years of Shifting Gears, discusses the progress these states have made to-date and outlines the activities that contributed most to their success.