Skip to Navigation Skip to Content

Our Work

Evaluating Innovations to Improve Employment Outcomes for Displaced Workers

Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, Wisconsin, selected Public Policy Associates, Inc. to evaluate its Advanced Manufacturing Pathways (AMP) PLUS program. The goal of AMP PLUS is to train veterans and workers who have lost their jobs because of global trade for skilled jobs.

The project seeks to improve student retention and speed up completion of programs preparing workers for careers in advanced manufacturing, a key part of the regional economy.  The strategies include building remedial education into the content of traditional courses, incorporating support services, and using enhanced technology.

The project is funded by a U.S. Department of Labor Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training grant.

The PPA Team:  Dr. Michael Polzin is the project manager.  He is a former associate professor in Michigan State University's School of Human Resources and Labor Relations and has decades of experience in workforce development, labor-management initiatives, and organizational development.

Our Work:  PPA is working closely with Fox Valley Technical College as a member of the AMP PLUS project team, providing a rapid stream of insights to support continuous improvement.  The team is evaluating the fidelity of implementation as well as the impact of the innovations.

Evaluation method:  PPA is conducting an implementation evaluation and is using a quasi-experimental design to compare the AMP PLUS participants with a group of job seekers who did not participate in the program. You can read more about our approach to evaluation here.

Results:  Fox Valley Technical College will better understand the effectiveness of the program in rapidly providing a talent pool to meet the needs of area employers, gaining insights into whether the program should be expanded or replicated.  The lessons learned will be valuable to the community college, the Appleton region, workforce development agencies in Wisconsin and across the country, and the U.S. Departments of Labor and Education.