About Research Alliance for Multiple Pathways (RAMP)
In September 2007, the U.S Department of Labor named the City of Mobile as one of the seven cities to undertake their Multiple Pathways Blueprint initiative, providing $2.95 million in funding to design and implement systems that connect young people who have dropped out of high school to alternative learning opportunities.
Mobile efforts were focused on engaging youth in career preparation and encouraging them to pursue postsecondary education. In response to a cohort dropout rate of 50.3 percent, Mobile County formed a collaborative of community, business, K-12, and higher education leaders called Research Alliance for Multiple Pathways (RAMP) for Mobile’s Youth.
RAMP included the:
- Development of a system and infrastructure necessary to monitor progress, report findings, engage the public, and drive and sustain the work required and
- Creation of a blueprint that addresses the needs of Mobile’s students that have either already dropped out of the education system or are at risk of doing so.
These outcomes were dependent on connecting key partnerships and resources in an alliance for maximum impact. Key partners in our alliance included the Mobile mayor, the Mobile County Public School System, the University of South Alabama, Bishop State Community College, Mobile Works, which coordinates the Workforce Investment Act activities, the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, the office of the District Attorney and MAEF, which coordinated all of the work associated with development of the RAMP Blueprint.
Seven years after the RAMP initiative began in Mobile, the work is still going strong through two projects referred to as RAMP UP, including and extended learning and summer transition program:
- Extended Learning Experience. The RAMP UP Extended Learning Experience (ELE) helps students improve their academic performance by partnering with parents to create a roadmap to graduation. The program aims to elevate students to another ELE: Excellence, Leadership and Empowerment. It does this by:
- supporting rigor in the classroom
- increasing the relevance of academic content for students; and
- establishing supportive relationships between students and caring adults.
ELE is designed to support student achievement using individualized, intensive instruction supported by Compass Learning, including electronic diagnostic assessments for the delivery of a personalized learning experience.
Early college/career culture enhancement sessions are planned for students and their parents for discussion on qualifications, admissions, financial aid and literacy, work student, scholarships, internships, fellowships, and hiring/interview process. At the close of the summer, students will present formal portfolios indicating their level of readiness and preparedness for their high school experience.
Students who successfully complete the RAMP UP Summer Transition Program transition to high school with a half credit.
For more information on RAMP or RAMP UP, please contact Hilder Wilson.