Founded in 2000, School-to-Career Progressions is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that began as a derivative of Cascade Engineering's highly successful Welfare-To-Career Program, which achieved an 80% retention rate in hiring welfare recipients.
Using this model, Progressions has partnered with Northeast Middle, Godwin Middle, Wyoming Middle, William C. Abney Academy and Central and Union High schools to offer character coaching and career training programs within the school curriculum.
After completing the Progressions program, 94% of senior high school students enrolled in post-secondary education or obtained full-time employment over a 5-year period.
In 2007, in collaboration with the Kent District 17th Circuit Court and the Grand Rapids Police Department, Progressions also began offering its character-development program to at-risk youth through a Diversion Program. This program targets first-time juvenile offenders in order to reduce the Disproportionate Minority Contact (DMC) within the Kent County justice system. According to a Kent County Family Division Judge, of the more than 500 students who have successfully completed this program, nearly 90% were not referred by police to the court within the following year.
Vision, Mission, and Goals
We envision a world where character skills are an integral part of the educational system, where students enter the workforce with the skills necessary to succeed, and where local businesses and the surrounding communities are healthy and vibrant.
Our mission is to apply leading practices in character coaching to help students of all ages acquire and develop the character resiliency skills necessary to succeed in school, the workforce, and the community.
• To develop thoughtful leaders and develop best practices in character coaching;
• To develop and deliver resources and methods for teaching character coaching;
• To apply multimedia methods of character coaching to students of all ages;
• To train educators, practitioners, community leaders, and others in character coaching.