Backpacks to Briefcases College Transition Program

This resource contains both evidence-based research and practice-based materials that can help guide the development, implementation, and continuous improvement of career pathways programs.

Patricia Phillips
Author(s) Organizational Affiliation
Davidson County Community College
Publication Year
Resource Type
Instructional Material
Key Words
Product Type

This is a briefing on the Backpacks to Briefcases (BB) College Transition Program at Davidson County Community College in Lexington. The program was begun because surveys showed that the students did not know very much at all about college. The program is 3 weeks long and has 3 components: intake and orientation; college success; and skills application. The program is targeted at 18-24 year olds who are within 6-8 months of graduating with a GED or adult high school diploma.

The program builds student’s career readiness through contextualized curricula. As students near completion of their secondary credential, the BB coordinator works with GED and HS diploma program instructors to incorporate career specific content with instruction. The contextualized curricula teaches reading, writing, vocabulary, and math using content and skills relevant to a given certificate program.

The program is named because students receive a backpack upon enrollment and a briefcase upon graduation.

Benefits and Uses

The purpose of this resource is to allow students, job seekers, advisors, counselors, and others to conduct career exploration and planning through contextualized curricula for five career pathways.

Resource Notice

This resource was reviewed and vetted through the Designing Instruction for Career Pathways initiative of the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Vocational and Adult Education under Contract No. ED-CFO-10-A-0072/0001.