Return to Headlines

Individual Career Exploration Online

student working on computers with teachers


At Metro North ABE’s Adult Education Center Columbia Heights/Fridley (CHF) site location, the majority of learners attend synchronous English classes and participate in online distance learning platforms. For adult learners who were professionally trained in their home language and country, strengthening English skills around specific careers is especially important for their next steps. In winter 2022, the CHF site piloted the addition of a new Distance Learning (DL) platform, EnGen, This MN ABE-approved DL platform allows learners to self-select three courses to enroll in simultaneously. EnGen offers a large catalog of industry-aligned courses in Business, Education, Energy, Health Care, Food and Hospitality, Manufacturing, Retail, and more. Adult learners who enroll with this platform can select a career-aligned pathway course as well as English skill-building courses.


This past year, the CHF site was awarded additional seat licenses for EnGen through an MN ABE state pilot. The seats are offered to learners in the higher ESL levels (4 and 5) in the morning and evening classes. A small team of CHF staff has created a structure that supports a community of learners by offering platform-specific orientations and biweekly check-ins with active users. Similar to other DL platforms, there are built-in assessments and analyses of students’ work and progress. What makes EnGen unique among DL platforms is the catalog of career pathway offerings. These are great ‘pre-bridge’ classes for learners who are exploring the next steps in their careers. Students can work at their own pace on courses of their choosing through this individualized platform. The Adult Education Center- Columbia Heights/Fridley continues to offer this platform as supplemental support for adult ESL learners enrolled in ESL classes who are navigating their future pathways.