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How to use P2C

The Pathway2Careers labor market exploration system is divided into two main sections: 1) Explore Your Area and 2) Explore Career Clusters. Each section presents specific information related to local labor market exploration.

In the “Explore Your Area” section, an introduction page will appear that gives a brief summary of the purpose and function of the LMI reports generated in P2C. The population information is specific to each individual school district. If district level information is not available, a notice will appear at the top of the profile and information will be displayed for the county in which the district resides.

What is Labor Market Information (LMI)?

Labor market information (LMI) is a collection of data compiled primarily by government agencies for the purpose of analyzing job trends, wages, employment status, and economic changes related to workforce development. This rich data source contains statistics on hundreds of occupations, including annual job openings, median wages, growth rates, level of education, and more. LMI is particularly useful in identifying careers that are projected to be in-demand within various occupational areas and geographic locations. For educational institutions, the ability to identify high-value jobs is essential in ensuring educational goals and strategies are aligned with current labor market needs.

Included in the district overview are images and a detailed description of the local labor shed for each school district.

Most states are divided into workforce regions (also referred to as Local Workforce Development Areas – LWDAs) where local workforce needs are monitored and supported through region-specific programs and services. For each workforce region, labor market information is collected to determine economic demand and workforce supply. This information provides a critical foundation for identifying methods of supporting employee needs and stimulating economic development.

Workforce regions are typically the smallest areas from which labor market information is collected. Gathering information from specific counties or districts is often too restrictive and noninformative, especially for rural communities and small towns where employment data is limited. Furthermore, a regional level of analysis can more accurately reflect the full range of employment opportunities available to individuals who are able to commute beyond their immediate areas.

In the Pathway2Careers labor market exploration system, LMI for career clusters (annual openings, median wages, etc.) is displayed for the workforce region(s) in which each district is located. The specific workforce region for each school district is specified in the labor shed summary available in the district overview (see Explore My Area). This is helpful to note when reviewing the career cluster information displayed for each district.

In the “Explore Career Clusters” section, a page will appear with the opportunity to select a specific career cluster. Selection a cluster will focus the labor market information on a particular cluster. This provides the opportunity to explore high-value occupations within individual clusters.

What are career clusters?

In our economy, there are hundreds of occupations and numerous ways of grouping them. The classification system most commonly used in schools and state agencies is the National Career Clusters Framework. This framework groups occupations into sixteen different clusters based on similarities in foundational knowledge and skills needed to achieve career success. The core academic and technical competencies that define each cluster provide the foundation on which students develop more advanced, industry-specific skills.

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