Office of Multiple Pathways

The way to every learner's future success!
The Office of Multiple Pathways, in partnership with other state agencies and organizations, is developing a comprehensive system of pathways and other learning opportunities that are designed to prepare all learners to be college and career ready.

Imagine a system that will provide all learners with:

  • Access to a variety of learning opportunities allowing each learner to focus on his or her academic and career goals.
  • Multiple ways for learners to exhibit their skills and knowledge.
  • Opportunities to earn advanced standing in postsecondary education and training programs while earning a diploma.
  • Opportunities to obtain a high school diploma with other stackable credentials recognized by higher education and by employers.

What are pathways?

A pathway is a rigorous educational opportunity for learners that integrates real-world learning experiences, and supports learners reaching their academic, career, and life goals. Career pathways include, for example, career and technical preparation programs, online and blended learning, internships and apprenticeships, and technical training and work-site experiences.

Adult Education 

Career and Technical Education

Diploma System and Secondary Education 

Virtual Learning

Adult Education

  • Adult GED programs gear up to prepare students and testing centers for the new computer-based GED tests.

Career and Technical Education

  • RIDE awards categorical funding to career preparation programs.

Diploma System Secondary Education

  • Schools respond to the release of NECAP results with comprehensive evidence-based intervention plans to support students in meeting graduation requirements.

Virtual Learning

Collaborative Pathway Initiatives

The Office of Multiple Pathways has initiated several projects with the goal of developing a comprehensive state-wide system of career pathways. Collaboration between and among other state agencies provides learner access to a variety of high quality academic and career opportunities.

The On-Ramps to Career Pathways Project

The Office of Multiple Pathways is working with the RI Department of Labor and Training and several other state agencies on the On-Ramps to Career Pathways project.  This pathways work is supported by the Federal Workforce Innovation Fund grant.  

One of the desired outcomes of Rhode Island’s implementation of a multiple pathways system is to decrease the achievement gap between students who have been historically classified as either “achievers” or “non-achievers”.  The Office of Multiple Pathways is collaborating with the RI Department of Labor and Training and several other state agencies to further decrease the achievement gap as it negatively impacts the employment prospects for “non-achievers”.This pathways work is supported by the Federal Workforce Innovation Fund grant.  The On-Ramps to Career Pathways initiative provides low-skilled, low- literacy, and long-term unemployed workers access to and training in critical and emerging RI career pathways.

Work Readiness Credential

As part of the On-Ramps to Career Pathways project, the Office of Multiple Pathways is collaborating with state agencies and state business representatives to develop a set of work readiness competencies and an associated credential that are:

  • Available statewide
  • Endorsed by employers
  • Available for a range of skill and literacy levels
  • Potential for incorporation into curriculum, education and training by the entire workforce system, K-!2, adult education, skills training, and higher education

The work readiness credential will be portable and will be available to all secondary youth, and adults who access adult education programming and training programs. 

Governors Workforce Board - Career  Pathways System TaskForce

The Governor's Workforce Board - Career Pathways System Taskforce

was convened by Governor Carcieri on December 6, 2010. The Taskforce was charged with establishing and overseeing a statewide careers pathways system. Representatives of all key stakeholders meet on a regular basis to review current pathways work and to promote and implement policy and funding initiatives in support of the development of the statewide pathways system. 

College & Career Readiness

With the growing complexity of the world and the increasing demands of the 21st-century workforce, there is little question that all students should graduate from high school fully prepared for college and careers.

A college and career ready student has the language arts and math knowledge and skills needed to qualify for and succeed in the postsecondary job training and/or education necessary for their chosen career (i.e. community college, university, technical/vocational program, apprenticeship, or significant on-the-job training).

Common Core Standards

The Common Core State Standards for ELA/Literacy and Mathematics have been adopted by a majority of states, including Rhode Island.  They are standards that are robust and relevant to the real world, reflect the knowledge and skills that young people need for success in college and careers, and provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn.

Competency-Based Pathways

Student success and college and career readiness is best assured when progress is based on demonstrated mastery of content and concepts, rather than a system that awards credit based on seat time.  Competency-based pathways allow for stronger personalization and student-centered learning, including:

  • ensuring all students succeed in building college and career readiness, consistent with recently adopted Common Core standards;
  • taking advantage of the technological advances in online learning;
  • allowing students to learn at their own pace, any time and everywhere; and
  • providing greater flexibility for students who might not otherwise graduate from high school.

Additional Resources


Contact Info for the Office of Multiple Pathways

Sharon Lee
Director - Office of Multiple Pathways
Paula Barney  Education Specialist - Multiple Pathways 
Cali Cornell
Education Specialist - Multiple Pathways
Marilyn Matzko
Education Specialist - Multiple Pathways 
Jeremiah Newell  Fellow - Multiple Pathways 
Sonya Barbosa
Support Staff - Adult Ed, CTE and Virtual
Lauren McCarthy
Support Staff - Multiple Pathways, Secondary and Director
Patti Ricci Support Staff - GED
Philip Less
Administrator ABE & GED
Kim Chouinard
Adult Education Specialist
Nancy Labonte
Adult Education Specialist
Patty Panzarella
Adult Education Specialist GED


Vanessa Cooley
Administrator Career Technical Education
Joyce Anderle
Education Specialist CTE
Paul McConnell
Education Specialist CTE
Paul Williams Education Specialist CTE
Diana Crowley
Education Specialist - Secondary Education

Holly Walsh
Education Specialist - e-Learning and Instructional Technology