Global Pathways Institute was created to find solutions to our national failure to prepare huge numbers of young people for success, including achieving economic independence.

“I want to acknowledge the critical and important and excellent work that Global Pathways Institute is doing on behalf of students in Arizona and across the Southwest.”

- Doug Ducey, Arizona Governor


Global Pathways Institute is committed to creating an America in which all young people are prepared to lead productive and successful lives. We believe that providing young people with high-quality multiple pathways is the best way to help them discover and develop their potential and achieve economic independence.


GPI will advance a national movement to provide high-quality multiple pathways to economic independence for all young people. We will work with the organizations, institutions, and individuals aligned with GPI to accelerate awareness and adoption of effective pathways models, to facilitate development of innovative pathways programs and policies, and to build support for the national movement.


Our system for preparing young people to achieve the American Dream is badly broken. The symptoms include the world’s highest college dropout rate; over $1 trillion in student loan debt; and staggering levels of teen and young adult unemployment / underemployment. This crisis now touches virtually every family in America.


Developing effective solutions to the Pathways challenge will require that we – and those who share our vision – work across four interrelated areas.

Global Pathways Institute - Research


We must promote and increase research into multiple pathways, career guidance and other pathways-related issues. Research on these issues has long been neglected, but is vital if we hope to build more effective pathways systems.

Global Pathways Institute - Convene


Bringing together the leaders who embrace our vision is a powerful strategy for building a movement, sharing research and developing an action agenda. GPI will work others to convene national and regional conferences, meetings and dialogues aimed at advancing the Pathways movement.

Global Pathways Institute - Communicate


We must overcome the enormous cultural barriers to a multiple pathways system, including the near-universal belief that the only prestigious pathway to success is a four-year college degree. We must promote the legitimacy of alternate pathways, as well as the dignity of work.

Global Pathways Institute - Collaborate


Developing an effective pathways system will require that leaders from the key sectors - business, government, education and philanthropy - work together to create innovative new approaches. GPI will work to encourage and foster such collaboration.

Career Development

Bill speaking at NCDA

GPI is working to build a national coalition to make career literacy a central focus of our education system. Director, William Symonds, gave keynote address at the National Career Development Association Global Conference on July 1, 2015.

NCDA Global Conference

Click below to view the PowerPoint from the NCDA Global Conference and to learn more about how you can get involved.

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Southwest Pathways Conference

May 28 - 29, 2015

Listen to ASU President Michael Crow’s keynote address at the 2015 Southwest Pathways Conference.

This sold-out event brought together business, education, government and philanthropic leaders to forge a strong "Call to Action."

Click on the link below to experience the excitement generated by the event - including videos of top speakers, photos and much more.

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News Coverage

The ideas that inform GPI were first expressed in the Pathways to Prosperity report, published in 2011. Since then, the work of GPI and director William Symonds has been recognized and reported on by media outlets from across the country.