New Report

Reach for The STARs: Realizing the Potential of America’s Hidden Talent Pool

Landmark research reveals a hidden talent pool of 71 million U.S. workers who do not have four-year degrees — but are Skilled Through Alternative Routes (STARs) and have the potential to thrive in higher-wage jobs.

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Opportunity@Work announces partnership with Calbright College to help Californians develop the skills to succeed in well paid, in-demand jobs.

STARs: Skilled Through Alternative Routes

Millions of Americans are locked out of better jobs simply because they lack a four-year degree. Yet these workers have skills that companies desperately need  – skills they developed through military service, in training programs, at community colleges, on the job, or through other alternatives to college. It’s time for more employers to recognize and value individuals who are Skilled Through Alternative Routes (STARs).

Learn more about STARs

We're re-wiring the labor market so that STARs can work, learn and earn to their full potential.

Our Approach

At Opportunity@Work, we envision a world where STARs have a fair chance to achieve the American Dream — with fulfilling jobs, rewarding careers, and better lives for themselves and their families.

Here’s how we’ll realize that vision:


We are awakening companies to the value of STARs’ talent. 

With a community of partners, we are gathering, sharing, and publishing data-driven insights that raise STARs’ visibility and change perceptions of workers without a four-year degree.

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We are connecting employers with STARs.

We are developing an online marketplace with matching and feedback capabilities so employers can more quickly identify trusted sources of job-seeking STARs and fill open roles more quickly.

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We are accelerating learning and investment in support of STARs.

We are inviting partners to share insights, and test solutions on behalf of STARs, sharing what we learn with the entire workforce development field. 

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Stay connected as we work to expand career opportunities for STARs!

Our Partners

Opportunity@Work appreciates the vital support from our partners and supporters.

Latest Updates

Discovering STARs just got easier: Introducing a new and inclusive jobs marketplace

Opportunity@Work’s marketplace is a critical piece in helping to level the playing field and make it easier for those without degrees to access meaningful careers.

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STARs Profile: Giancarlo Martinez

Meet Giancarlo Martinez, a STAR and senior UI developer/ designer from the South Bronx with a compelling story.

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Opportunity@Work announces partnership with Calbright College

Against a backdrop of COVID-19 jobs crisis, Opportunity@Work and Calbright College team up to help Californians develop the skills to succeed in well paid, in-demand jobs

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