About the Appalachia Partnership Initiative

Map showing counties in the Marcellus and Utica Shale regions

Map showing the API's Tri-State County Focus

Launched in 2014, the Appalachia Partnership Initiative (API) is a multi-year social investment program funded by $20 million from Chevron and supported by other regional corporations and nonprofit partners.

The API seeks to build long-term, sustainable STEM education and technical training programs in order to develop a skilled workforce that meets the needs of the energy and related manufacturing industries in the Greater Pittsburgh area.

The initiative focuses on 27 counties throughout Southwestern Pennsylvania, Northern West Virginia, and Eastern Ohio—which make up a large portion of the Marcellus and Utica shale regions.

To achieve its ultimate goal of improving the economic and education environments in the region, the API is investing in new programs and expanding existing STEM education and technical training programs. These efforts are focused on

  • Promoting long-term, sustainable strategies to build capacity of local workers for jobs in the energy sector and in advanced manufacturing
  • Creating new economic and educational opportunities
  • Building relationships among the corporate, nonprofit, and community leaders in the region.

Setting the (STEM) Record Straight


  • Too hard
  • For smart kids only
  • For college-bound kids
  • Just math & science
  • Not for girls


  • Collaborative
  • Hands-on
  • Problem solving
  • Project based
  • For all students

RAND's Role

RAND is the independent evaluation and monitoring lead for the API, providing objective evidence to help the initiative assess its progress. RAND is producing five annual, independent reports that document the region's STEM workforce, employment, and wages in energy- and advanced manufacturing-related industries as well as STEM education.

RAND is also tracking the efforts of the API-funded programs toward its strategic goals through a portfolio monitoring and evaluation system. Findings from the first year of monitoring and evaluation will be available in September 2016.