The Council for Adult and Experiential Learning is a Chicago-based national nonprofit organization whose mission is to link learning and work for adults.

For more than 40 years, CAEL has worked at all levels within the higher education, public, and private sectors to create opportunities for adult learners, to increase access to education and economic security, and to develop and provide effective services and tools. Through prior learning assessment, career and education advising, research, and dissemination, CAEL has been the national voice for adult learners.

How We Helped

Next Street led CAEL in developing and realizing a strategic plan that selectively invests in products that monetize CAEL’s intellectual property and expertise while scaling its impact. In addressing strategic and organizational needs, Next Street delivered:

  • Created a strategic plan and financial model for the next five years of growth
  • Redesigned the organization to support scale and growth
  • Assessed market and developed business plan for a career-planning SaaS
  • Assessed and created roadmap for CAEL’s web-based, prior assessment platform

Our Impact

  • We formalized financial management and created a financial roadmap — an economic model and capital plan — for managing the growth of the organization (projected ~25 percent revenue CAGR).
  • We helped complete an $8 million capital raise to fund the investments identified in the strategic plan
  • We conducted deep-dive assessments of two products, resulting in the launch of a new career-planning SaaS product and the scaling of CAEL’s web-based prior learning assessment platform

Next Street worked side by side with us to discover the hidden potential in our organization. Their recommendations have changed the way we function and prepared us for the growth ahead.

Pamela Tate, President & CEO

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