RGV LEAD manages a network known as the Academies of the Rio Grande Valley, school districts and high school campuses that utilize a career academy model founded on Ford Next Generation Learning (Ford NGL) strategies. The Ford NGL career academy model promotes experiential learning and proactive business and civic engagement in schools. RGV LEAD introduced Ford NGL to the Valley in 2014, and eight school districts began implementing academies in 2015-2016.
In December 2016, Ford NGL national leadership honored the Academies of the Rio Grande Valley as an official Ford NGL Designated Region. RGV LEAD manages the network; coordinates RGV CEO Champions and Industry Councils meetings to facilitate business partnerships; provides ongoing support, training and evaluation for districts in active implementation; and provides opportunities and support for other districts joining in later phases of implementation. In 2017, RGV LEAD’s Director joined the Ford Next Generation Learning National Leadership Team.