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This paper offers real data to provide HPOG grantees and other workforce development projects with insight into career pathway strategies that may be overlooked. In particular, it explores a phenomenon referred to as "the benefits cliffs effect." It examines families that encounter benefits cliffs in eight states and describes strategies for working with HPOG participants and other low-income individuals to confront it.

The purpose of this paper is to offer technical assistance to current HPOG grantees and other workforce development projects that serve customers receiving TANF benefits. This paper provides tips on creating and maintaining successful partnerships with TANF agencies and other organizations that serve the same customers as the HPOG grants.

As part of a larger design thinking project, the Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG) program co-created two models of instructor engagement with instructors across its HPOG 1.0 grantees: The World Café and Designing with Stakeholders.  A number of HPOG programs volunteered to pilot these methods in their program to (1) improve collaboration between instructors and HPOG staff, and (2) engage instructors in devising innovative strategies to improve student persistence.  The publication “Using the World Café to Improve Instructor Engagement: A Guide for Health Profession Opportunity Grants Programs” describes the World Café pilot projects and the experiences of the grantees who participated.


Not familiar with design thinking?  At its heart, design thinking is a human-centered approach to problem solving.  It consists of a set of tools that focus on empathy for the end-user in the creation and consideration of any solution.

This report focuses on TANF recipients’ engagement and experiences in the HPOG Program, with the goal of helping understand how HPOG programs serve TANF recipients and developing hypotheses for further study.

Specifically, this report uses preliminary data to describe observed differences — and possible reasons for the differences — in the participation, outcomes, and experiences of two types of HPOG participants:

• Those receiving TANF benefits when they begin an HPOG program, and
• Those not receiving TANF when they begin an HPOG program

The report then addresses why TANF recipient participation levels vary across HPOG programs and identifies strategies programs used to engage the TANF population and work cooperatively with local TANF agencies.

The Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG) program released a paper on how to use labor market data to understand and respond to employer demands.  It contents support multiple elements of the Job-Driven Training Checklist, unveiled by Vice President Biden, including Engaging Employers, Smart Choices, Measurement Matters and Stepping Stones. The paper offers an 8-step approach to utilizing and understanding labor market information.

The HPOG program recently published a paper to share the successful strategies our grantees have used in engaging TANF participants.  While this paper offers peer technical assistance for HPOG grantees, its contents are relevant to other workforce development, training, and educational institutions that serve TANF recipients.  It includes a checklist of effective strategies based on the experiences of six HPOG grantees and their TANF agency partners.