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Cradle to Career Neighborhood Supports

Jobs Tomorrow


At Drexel we believe that our future is linked to the future of the community that surrounds us and that we are a part of. 



Laying the groundwork for innovation-economy career paths

We have prioritized a cradle-to-career strategy - Jobs Tomorrow - that supports and enhances learning opportunities for the children who are our neighbors. It is our goal to make sure that children born in the West Philadelphia Promise Zone today will be stepping into the exciting innovation-district development at Schuylkill Yards twenty years from now as engineers and scientists.



Action for Early Learning

It starts with early education, and Action for Early Learning works with families and caregivers as well as with childcare centers to improve neighborhood children’s access to early learning opportunities. AFEL’s Family Ambassadors share resources with parents and families, and the Alliance of Childcare Providers works with childcare center directors and teachers to boost their skills and capacities. This work means that more children arrive at kindergarten ready to learn, and more children are hitting important developmental milestones that are early steps on their pathways to success.


School of Education

Drexel’s School of Education works closely with two neighborhood public schools – Powel K-4 and McMichael K-8 – where our faculty and students support those schools’ work on improving student outcomes.


Science Leadership Academy Middle School

Drexel has coordinated the creation of a new neighborhood middle school for the Promise Zone: the Science Leadership Academy Middle School. SLA-MS was established with its first class of fifth graders in 2016, and has been hosted at the Dornsife Center for Neighborhood Partnerships for the past two years. For the 2018-19 school year SLA-MS moves into space at the Science Center where it will operate until the new school building along 36thStreet is completed. SLA-MS provides a rigorous, project-based curriculum that highlights the values of inquiry, research, collaboration, presentation, and reflection.


Lindy Scholars

Through the Lindy Center for Civic Engagement, Drexel delivers Lindy Scholars, a tutoring and mentorship program to participating neighborhood middle schools. Drexel undergraduate students support local children in math and literacy to improve their learning outcomes. 


Dornsife Center for Neighborhood Partnerships

Our support for high school students is reflected in programming at the Dornsife Center, with a suite of career-focused creative expression, sustainability, and entrepreneurship programming. Drexel’s recent purchase of the Caring People Alliance’s West Philadelphia Community Center building next to the Dornsife Center will allow us to broaden our programming for high school students and young adults in the Promise Zone.


Digital On-Ramps

The Digital On-Ramps citywide collaborative, led by the Office of University & Community Partnerships, brings a set of digital career tools for Philadelphia learners and jobseekers. Digital badging lets students and adults quantify and categorize their skills and achievements. The ePortfolio resource allows jobseekers to organize information about their education, experience, and credentials in an electronic, shareable format.


Learn more about Digital On-Ramps:



Promise Neighborhood

And finally the Drexel-led Promise Neighborhood grant-funded initiative links together these resources in a comprehensive and data-informed approach to improving health and learning outcomes for Promise Zone children. 


We have big ambitions for the children and families in our community, and we are committed to our collaboration with them for the long run.