Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.


DC Works

Career Pathways

The WIC convened this multi-agency and community stakeholder Task Force to create a strategic plan and then implement a career pathways system in the District, ensuring all residents have access to the education, training, and career services necessary to gain economic independence.  The Task Force was established by DC legislation (Mayor’s Order 2014-232)  in order to better align adult basic education programs with workforce development to ensure all District residents can access career pathways in high-demand fields.  The Task Force has a strong focus on addressing the needs of DC residents with  high barriers to employment, particularly those with low literacy levels.  Read the Career Pathways Task Force Strategic Plan.

The Task Force also makes recommendations for the use of the Career Pathways Innovation Fund, to be used to design, pilot, and scale best practices in the implementation of adult career pathways.  With initial funding, the WIC is creating a Career Pathways Community of Practice, in-line with the Strategic Plan and recommendations from the Task Force.  The Community of Practice (COP) will provide the opportunity for District adult education and workforce providers and partners to work collaboratively on improving the quality and coordination of services to District of Columbia residents through facilitated professional development and technical assistance, in alignment with WIOA and the Career Pathways Task Force Strategic Plan.  Projected outcomes of the COP include:

  • Increased expertise in subject areas, greater knowledge of evidenced-based practices, and ability to implement expertise and knowledge at the program level
  • Development of stronger linkages between program design/curriculum and business needs, informed by LMI data and employer relationships
  • Clear understanding of where providers fit into a sector pathway and relevant career maps
  • Create relationships between providers for troubleshooting, sharing of promising practices, leverage partnerships
  • Enhance performance outcomes due to implementation of best and evidenced-based practices
  • Readying providers for future funding opportunities, including future Innovation Fund Grants

As a result, in 2021, the DC Workforce Investment Council, in collaboration with industry and other partners to develop career pathway maps that:

  • Are driven by business and industry leaders;
  • Are well-coordinated among system partners; and
  • Provide opportunities and pathways to the middle class for all District residents.

Pathway Maps.pngIn today’s economy, the workforce must have the skills required to meet the needs of local businesses and industries. Career pathway maps are tools that help policymakers, jobseekers, employers, and others identify and understand the employment opportunities within a local industry, including the skills and requirements necessary for economic mobility and professional growth for jobseekers. In November 2023, following input from local employers and workforce development professionals, the DC Workforce Investment Council expanded the original pathway maps to a total of 18 across the 8 high-demand industry sectors. These career pathway maps are intended to inform public investment in workforce development training, services, and supports, and support individuals seeking to enter the District’s high-demand industries at low- to mid-level roles. Maps will be updated periodically to reflect current data and trends in the labor market.

What are Career Pathway Maps?

Career pathway maps are tools that help individuals explore available opportunities in the District’s high-demand sectors; they also serve as a tool for professionals in education, workforce development, and human resources, as they support job seekers and employees in choosing among the opportunities that interest them. The career pathway maps include information about credentials, labor market value, and wages relevant to the local context. 

View the WIC Career Pathway Maps

How the Maps Work:

Each map is a visual representation of potential career progression and advancement of occupations within an industry. The pathway chevrons align to a table that provides insight into each of the job titles along the career pathway.

Job Titles: Hyperlinked to Career Coach DC, which provides labor market data, information about related available training, and current District-specific and regional job openings.
Wage: Data represents hourly income in the District of Columbia for the 10th to 90th percentile range, as calculated by Lightcast.
Unique Postings: Data represents the number of unique job postings in the District of Columbia for the previous year as calculated by Ligthcast labor market data.
Job Zones: A Job Zone, defined by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration, is a group of occupations that are similar in how much education people need to do the work; how much related experience people need to do the work; and how much on-the-job training people need to do the work.
Attainability: Identifies how achievable the occupational level is: entry, middle, high, or advanced levels.
Occupation Job Titles: Titles listed under the occupation provide examples of the titles listed on job posting under the occupation.
Foundational Skills: Foundational skills are the fundamental, portable skills that are essential to conveying and receiving information that is critical to training and workplace success.