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Career Launch Endorsement Review (CLER)

Endorsement Overview

The Career Launch endorsement demonstrates a career-oriented program meets specific, rigorous requirements that ensure students complete with strong academic knowledge and workplace-ready skills. Career Launch programs can be offered at community and technical colleges, training centers, universities and K-12 schools that partner with higher-education institutions.

A program must receive an official endorsement to be officially designated as a "Career Launch" program. An endorsement is also required for certain types of state Career Launch funding.

To be considered for an endorsement as a Career Launch program, please complete and submit the following:

Career Launch programs can take three general paths towards approval:

  • Registered apprenticeships — automatically receive Career Launch endorsement. An endorsement application is not necessary. View the list of active apprenticeship programs
  • Existing college programs — will need to demonstrate that they meet Career Launch criteria in the application. 
  • New educational programs — must go through their standard program-approval process before applying for Career Launch endorsement. 

Once your program’s application is received, the CLER team will review the application and do one of the following:

  • Recommend program endorsement to Career Connect Washington
  • Provide feedback for application revision
  • Not recommend program endorsement to Career Connect Washington

Other contacts:

The Career Launch Endorsement Review Application Scoring team will consist of representatives from secondary, post-secondary, and labor partners identified and supported by their respective agencies, governing bodies, or labor organizations.  These team members will review, score, and recommend endorsements once each month to Career Connect Washington’s Standing Committee for final endorsement approval. 

Career Launch programs should be at least 45 credits, part of which must include paid work experience in the program’s field of study.

The following checklists outline the specific requirements for a CLER application. Additional evidence (e.g. existing program outcomes) may be submitted.

Program checklist:

  • Program description including length of program in years and total hours (including split between classroom and worksite).
  • Estimated number of hours per week at worksite and in classroom (including how this approach may shift throughout the program).
  • Demonstration of labor market demand for specified skills/career in local region.
  • Projected count of student enrollment, student completion, and employer participation by year for five years.
  • Concise description of development process to create the Career Launch program (e.g. who was involved, when, how was the program piloted, etc.).
  • Signed letter of endorsement from all relevant partners,  stakeholders, and regional networks (including employers, labor organizations, academic institutions, regional networks, community-based organizations, individuals, and other relevant stakeholders in support of the proposed Career Launch program).
  • Description of resources, supports, or other processes to recruit and support students from underserved backgrounds (e.g. including students of color, students from low income families, English language learners, students with disabilities, foster students, students experiencing homelessness, students from single parent homes, and other populations that face barriers to employment).

Industry-related checklist:

  • Address of worksite(s) where Career Launch students will complete supervised training.
  • Hourly wage rate or stipend (total stipend must cover the total number of hours worked divided by no less than the state minimum hourly rate).
  • List of entry-level positions and associated job descriptions for which a Career Launch student would be eligible upon completion of the program.
  • List of specific skills and competencies required for completion of Career Launch program, with demonstrated alignment to entry-level positions, job descriptions, and average local salary ranges; Employer attests that  Career Launch program is in compliance with required federal, state, and local regulations.
  • Description of common career pathway(s) beginning with entry-level position specified, and including demonstration of likely salary growth over specified time period.
  • Demonstrated competency alignment with relevant professional standards for specified entry-level positions when applicable.

Academic-related checklist:

  • List of academic institution(s) providing career-aligned instruction for Career Launch program.
  • Curriculum scope and sequence aligned to skills and competencies provided in employment checklist.
  • Demonstration of student supports (e.g. mentoring, advising, financial aid, tutoring) available for Career Launch students enrolled in the course.
  • Number of postsecondary credits provided and/or credential earned upon completion of program.
  • Demonstrated curricular alignment with relevant professional and/or academic standards associated with coursework and credential, when applicable.
  • Details of potential for current or future partnerships and/or scalability of the program within and across sectors and/or geographic locations (e.g. articulation, degree pathways), when applicable.

Below are sample applications submitted prior to moving to the online application. Despite a change in format, the applications still provide helpful information for programs seeking Career Launch endorsement. 


Automotive/Diesel Technology

Business and Entrepreneurship


Health and Public Safety

Information Technology

Manufacturing and Construction Trades

Natural Resources

Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM)


Additions to industry partners can be done in the online application through the Career Launch dashboard. Programs can add industry or educational partners in Section Two, Program Sponsors & Partners. New partners added will receive an email asking them to confirm their partnership with the Career Launch program.

The endorsement is valid for three years upon approval of the program. 


Genevieve Howard
Policy Associate, Workforce Education

Karin Gitchel
Program Administrator, Workforce Education


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Last Modified: 8/28/23, 3:06 PM

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