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Employer Provided Innovation Challenges (EPIC) provides access to a national network of employer facing organizations and other challenge providers to deliver high-quality, project-based learning.

The demand for work-based learning opportunities for students is on the rise. Employers, policymakers, educators — are all in search of better ways to connect students to careers, increase awareness of in-demand industries, and equip students with employability skills. While internships have long been the method for providing these opportunities, there simply is not enough capacity to meet the need.

To address this challenge, the U.S. Chamber Foundation is piloting employer sponsored project-based learning as a solution that scales, can be credentialed, and can deliver high impact career awareness and career preparation for learners. EPIC engages high school and postsecondary students with challenges to real-world problems sponsored by business.  

Building Experience, Increasing Opportunity

  • Creating PathwaysEPIC demonstrates that authentic problem-based learning is a high-quality form of work-based learning that can better support career awareness, career exploration, and career advancement (i.e., reskilling and upskilling) for learners and workers.
  • Solutions at ScaleEPIC demonstrates that authentic problem-based learning can be supported at scale through a nationally accredited network of employers and employer facing organizations functioning as host organizations.
  • Credentials and EquityEPIC demonstrates that authentic problem-based learning can be credentialed in a trusted and high-quality way, and can be more equitably accessed by learners, workers, and those organizations that serve them.

Students Need More Real-World Experience from Industry

We know from American Student Assistance (ASA) research that while 79 percent of high school students would be interested in a work-based learning experience, only 34% were aware of any opportunities for students their age — and just 2% of students had completed a hands-on career learning experience during high school.

Ways to Partner

If you are an employer facing organization: serve as a host organization for challenges operating as an intermediary between the employers that develop those challenges and the education and workforce partners that organize teams of learners and workers that participate in them.

If you are an education or workforce partner: make this opportunity available to learners and workers to support career awareness, exploration, and development.

If you are an employer: partner with a challenge host organization to design and deliver authentic projects for teams of learners and workers.

For more information:

Contact Sarah Castro to learn more and partner at

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