A coordinated statewide cross-sector and industry-led effort to improve the career readiness of all youth 

About PrepareRI

Prepare RI is a significant expansion of the Prepare RI Dual Enrollment Fund that allows high school students to receive both high school and college credits at no cost to them or their families. The Prepare RI effort is now broadened to focus on not only giving all students advanced coursework opportunities, but to provide comprehensive academic opportunities, life skills, and career preparation to all RI students through programs, pathways, and work-based experiences that develop their passions, potential, and promise. 

Through Prepare RI, K-12, post-secondary, and employers will be able to tap into a cohesive alignment system that makes moving students through each step of the college and career education pathway seamless and easy. Prepare RI is committed to making career readiness available to all students through a system of career pathways. Through Prepare RI, career education will be high quality, accessible for all, and expanded to ensure it aligns with the needs of local high-wage, high-demand employer needs. 

We Need Your Help

Your input matters! 

Please participate by joining the Career Readiness Working Group, adding to our feedback surveys, and following along with upcoming events and updates.

How Did PrepareRI Develop?

How Did PrepareRI Develop?

In the spring of 2016, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo announced that the Rhode Island Department of Education secured a $100,000 planning grant through the New Skills for Youth Initiative to develop a detailed Career Readiness action plan that serves two overarching goals: 
  • to dramatically increase the number of students in Rhode Island who successfully complete college and career pathways that begin in secondary school and culminate in post-secondary degrees and/or industry credentials with labor market value; and 
  • to catalyze transformational approaches to the design and implementation of programs and policies to increase students’ career-readiness in Rhode Island and disseminate lessons learned to the rest of the country. 

In response to the grant, the Governor’s office and RIDE immediately began building a team of leaders from RI business and industry, as well as K-12, the Department of Labor and Training, and post-secondary education, to create a 3-year action plan that would be responsive to the needs of employers, educators, students, and families. 

The cross-sector working group also launched a Fellowship Program to garner additional help and insight from educators working in the field of career readiness. 

The team is currently working towards securing Phase Two funding for the Prepare RI initiative, which would provide additional funding support to this work. 

About the New Skills for Youth Initiative 

Rhode Island is among 24 states and the District of Columbia that secured grants for this work through phase one of the New Skills for Youth grant opportunity. The grants are part of a $75 million, five-year initiative developed by JP Morgan Chase, in partnership with the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), a nonprofit organization of public officials who head departments of elementary and secondary education, and Advance CTE, a national nonprofit that represents state directors and leaders responsible for secondary, post-secondary, and adult Career Technical Education (CTE). The initiative is aimed at increasing economic opportunity for young people by strengthening career-focused education starting in high school and ending with post-secondary degrees or credentials aligned with business needs.

CCSSO launched its national Career Readiness Task Force in the spring of 2014 to bring a renewed focus to this work. The task force – composed of state school chiefs, post-secondary leaders, business leaders, and career-technical education experts – analyzed leading career preparation practices in the U.S. and abroad and identified specific policies states must adopt to dramatically improve the preparation of their high school graduates. 

The report is available here.



Please participate by joining the Career Readiness Working Group, adding to our feedback surveys in the Working Group tab, and following along with upcoming events and updates. 

Prepare RI Upcoming Events 

  • October 7th – New Skills for Youth Grant Submission
  • October 20th – New Skills for Youth Plan Presentation at Governor’s Workforce Board Retreat
  • October 24th and 25th – CCSSO New Skills for Youth Inter-state Convening in Washington DC

Career Readiness Working Group

Career Readiness Working Group

The Career Readiness Working Group comprises over 60 stakeholders including employers, educators, school counselors, school leaders, non-profit leaders, state government, and others focused on informing the state’s three-year action plan for career readiness. 

Session 1: Introductory Meeting

June 23rd, 8-10am, CCRI Warwick

Session 2: Employer Led Engagement

July 28th, 8-10am, Northern RI Collaborative

Session 3: The Career Education Teacher Pipeline

August 11th, 8-10am, Tech Collective 

Session 4: Comprehensive Career Pathways for All

August 25th, 8-10am, Westerly High School

Session 5: Career Counseling

September 8th, 8-10am, BVCAP Pawtucket

Session 6: Draft Action Plan

September 29th, 8-10am, Rhode Island State House


Career Readiness Fellows

Career Readiness Fellows

In May 2016, the Governor and RIDE invited K-12 educators, guidance counselors, Youth Center Staff, and faculty and staff from higher education to apply to be 2016 Career Readiness Fellows.  We received many excellent applicants and chose four to be Fellows. 

Fellows have spent the summer:

  • Developing policy around increasing career-readiness opportunities for Rhode Island students
  • Offering recommendations for short- and long-term policy changes to best support career readiness initiatives in our state
  • Conducting research on best practices and what other states are doing to promote career readiness

Any success we achieve through this initiative will be because of our practitioners. 

Meet our Career Readiness Fellows

Elizabeth Dwyer:

Elizabeth is a mathematics teacher at the Rhode Island Nurses Institute Middle College. 

  • Creates rigorous Algebra 2 and Geometry curriculum aligned to medical math
  • Provides courses in career education for students on nursing pathways
  • Honored as an Amgen Fellow as a STEM educator who exemplifies achievement, perseverance, and leadership

Dan Angell:

Dan is an electrician teacher at Chariho Career and Technical Center. 

  • A certified National Joint Apprenticeship Committee instructor
  • A licensed electrical contractor and journeyman
  • Served in the United States Navy

Eric Hall:

Eric is a professor of medical imaging at Rhode Island College 

  • Has a PhD in biology from Wesleyan University 
  • Worked with URI and CCRI to create degree-granting programs in particular areas of medical imaging
  • Established Food Safety concentration in Health Sciences at Daniele, Inc.

Eve Bonitati:

Eve is a school counselor Hugh B. Bain Middle School and Arlington Elementary School. 

  • Has an MA in education with a concentration in school counseling
  • Develops career readiness curriculum and facilitates career fairs 
  • Firm believer in developing student’s individual voices and talents


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