Recognizing that adult learners are the backbone of the U.S. economy, CAEL helps forge a clear, viable connection between education and career success, providing solutions that promote sustainable and equitable economic growth. CAEL opens doors to opportunity in collaboration with workforce and economic developers; postsecondary educators; employers and industry groups; and foundations and other mission-aligned organizations. By engaging with these stakeholders, we foster a culture of innovative, lifelong learning that helps individuals and their communities thrive. A national membership organization established in 1974, CAEL is part of Strada Collaborative, a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization whose mission it is to empower all learners — and those who serve them — by providing the critical resources, educational support, and career experiences that lead to equitable education and employment pathways. To learn more about Collaborative, and the parts that comprise it, visit stradacollaborative.org.
Engaging at national, state, and local levels, we help link learning and work to create lifelong pathways for adults
Discover what guides us
Every adult has a pathway to lifelong learning and meaningful work.
CAEL envisions a world with continuous and accessible opportunities for adult learners to gain work-relevant knowledge, skills, and credentials -- enabling all to prosper in a complex world.
Our expertise encompasses credit for prior learning (including the prior learning assessment process), developing strategies aligned to education options and labor market needs, mapping career pathways for adult learners, and developing policies and processes to support long-term sustainability of partner programs.
Our Theory of Change
A theory of change is a guide that helps us stay on track and improve our work. CAEL has adopted a theory of change to advance our mission and vision over the next five years. It places a special emphasis on adult learners and workers who face barriers due to racial, ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic biases.
Our theory of change seeks to create positive outcomes for:
Ultimate outcome: All adult learners have an equitable opportunity for, and success in, obtaining credentials and skills that lead to well-paying, good-quality jobs, increased earnings and economic mobility, and improved quality of life.
Want to learn more? Let's talk.
If your institution or organization is seeking guidance, solutions, or support from CAEL, or if you have an idea for a future collaboration initiative with us, please reach out. We'd love to connect.