Professional Development

Workshop Faculty

NCPN’s career pathways workshop team is led by Debra Mills, Vice President of Partnerships for the Center for Occupational Research and Development (CORD), and includes national experts in career pathways, partnership building, and contextual teaching. Read more about our workshop faculty below.




Debra Mills, Vice President of Partnerships at CORD, focuses on transitions between secondary and postsecondary experiences. Mills has expertise in curriculum development, staff development, facilitation of linkages between secondary and postsecondary institutions and partnership building with business, industry and labor.

She has developed standards-based curriculum frameworks in manufacturing, construction, and transportation career clusters at a state level; assisted community colleges with strategic professional development plans; developed state and local-level partnership structures to support career pathways; and given numerous keynote speeches for state education conferences. Mills is an experienced classroom teacher and former workforce development grant administrator.

Her awards include the American Association of Community College’s Dale Parnell Tech Prep Award and the U.S. Dept. of Education’s Excellence in Tech Prep Award. She has written or contributed to several books including Tech Prep: The Next Generation Planning Guide, Career Pathways: Education with a Purpose, and Adult Career Pathways: Providing a Second Chance in Public Education. She is the lead trainer for and developer of the NCPN Career Pathways Leadership Certification.




Carol Jurgens is a Senior Consultant for the NCPN workshop team with expertise in building secondary to postsecondary transitions through career clusters, pathways, and programs of study. She is recognized for her leadership in the areas of work-based learning legal issues, tech prep articulation, career and life skills assessment, and statewide collaboration in implementing career education. Carol was the State Director of Tech Prep and Work Based Learning in the Career Education Division of the Nebraska Department of Education from 1993 - 2006.

She worked closely with the School Counseling and Career and Technical Education State Directors in designing, planning, implementing, and marketing the Nebraska Career Fields/Clusters Model, including the development of the Nebraska School Counseling Career Development Guide and related curriculum and professional development. As a former high school marketing teacher, Carol’s awards include the Nebraska Marketing Association Distinguished Service Award, Marketing Teacher of the Year, and the Nebraska Vocational Association Teacher of the Year.

As a founding member of the National Association of Tech Prep Leadership (NATPL), Carol has served as President and Consultant and also served on the National Tech Prep Network Advisory Board. Jurgens is recognized as a national presenter and has written or contributed to several publications including the Nebraska Work Based Learning (WBL) Manual, WBL Instruction Guide, WBL Coordination Techniques Guide, and Nebraska Career Education Principles Guide.




Libby Livings-Eassa is the President of the National Career Pathways Network (NCPN). A 20 year education veteran, she has trained 1000’s of practitioners in all areas of career pathways systems from contextual teaching to programs of study enabling practitioners to assist students in meeting more rigorous competencies. She has developed 500+ programs of study, articulation and dual enrollment agreements for over 50 schools, which provided opportunities for thousands of students to receive advanced standing credits.

She is Founder and CEO of Divergent Consulting - an open-source consulting firm founded on a passion to build capacity in educational systems across our nation.

In 2011, Libby received an appointment to the U.S. Department of Education to work with the Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE). Her responsibilities included serving as Senior Program Lead for the broad scale dissemination of OVAE's Programs of Study framework, Program Director for the Rigorous Programs of Study National Initiative, one of OVAE’s leads and subject matter experts for the U.S. Dept. of Labor's Adult Career Pathways Institute Initiative, and on the Perkins monitoring team.

She is a contributing author in the 2012 publication “The Career Pathways Effect: Linking Education and Economic Prosperity” and to the publication “Career Pathways: Education With a Purpose.




Jeraline Marsh Dr. Jeraline Marsh recently celebrated 20 years with the Palm Beach County School District having served as a high school business teacher and high school counselor. Currently she serves as the Lead Career Education Specialist within the Department of Choice and Career Options, overseeing district Career Pathways initiatives, Criminal Justice Academies, Fire Academy, and work‐based learning programs.

She is a national consultant for the Center for Occupational Research and Development conducting national trainings and presentations on a variety of topics related to Career Pathways, Counseling, College & Career Readiness, and Career & Technical Education.

Jeraline is the proud mother of a son and two daughters. In her spare time she enjoys mentoring, conducting community service projects through her sorority, watching the food network, and Zumba!




Sandra Harwell is a Senior Consultant for the NCPN workshop team. She is committed to redefining CTE and believes that the key to improving the U.S. economy is to prepare proficient workers through innovative and effective technical education. In her view, rigorous academic content combined with relevant technical skills is essential to preparing the workforce of today and tomorrow.

Sandi specializes in helping teachers integrate rigorous academic content into CTE curriculum. Her publications include the workbook for Dale Parnell’s Why Do I Have to Learn This?;Professional Development: It’s Not an Event, It’s a Process; Promising Practices in Contextual Learning, Promising Practices for Connecting Schools with the Real World; and Improving Student Performance.

Sandi brings a diverse background to her consultancy work including experience as an advanced registered nurse practitioner, director of education services for a hospital, director of adult and workforce education for the Suncoast Area Center for Educational Enhancement at the University of South Florida in Tampa, and Vice President for Professional Development at CORD before joining the Association of Career and Technical Education to work with the National Center for Research in CTE to develop a dissemination plan for best practices in CTE. Sandi has taught nursing at the baccalaureate and master’s levels and is currently teaching graduate education programs at the University of South Florida and Stetson University.