Promising Practices in Successful Business and Education Partnerships

The number of businesses partnering with education has risen dramatically from 42,200 in 1983-84 to approximately 200,000 in 1991. This study is one of only a handful to have explored the business perspective toward business-education partnerships, examining what business-education partnerships look like as well as the interrelating mechanisms that guide them. More specifically, this project explored where business prioritized its time and resources in these partnerships and why. This project was funded under a grant from the Boeing Corporation.


  1. To learn how business representatives characterize their partnerships with education in terms of activities they engage in with students, teachers, and administrators.
  2. To uncover where business prioritizes time and resources and the rationale they give for placing higher priority on some activities than others.
  3. To learn what outcomes business expects to achieve in their business-education partnerships.

Project Profile

This study explored business involvement in business-education partnerships using the National Employer Leadership Council’s Employer Participation Model as its framework. In summer 2003, project staff conducted telephone interviews with 30 representatives from businesses around the country currently or formerly involved in business-education partnerships. Businesses were sampled from various occupational clusters including information technology, manufacturing, health sciences, and finance. Results of the study are being analyzed and a monograph is in final stages of preparation.

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