How this WorksWe connect students and teachers with businesses

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Path to Careers makes connecting easy

  1. Businesses Create ExperiencesBusinesses post opportunities for students and teachers to learn more about who they are, what they do and the talent they seek. Experiences such as job shadows, internships and industry tours are easily customized by the companies themselves so it's clear what they can offer, when and to whom. Selected business staff will receive requests from a small group of contacts at each district on behalf of all students and teachers with information needed to make the connections easy to coordinate.

  2. Schools Register to Connect to BusinessesSelected school staff will easily click to connect teachers, counselors, and students to career experiences within local businesses to learn first-hand what those businesses do and what skills students need to have successful careers with them. Requests for experiences will automatically go to the right people at the selected company every time.

  3. Students Experience and Explore OpportunitiesStudents expand their awareness of local businesses and career pathway opportunities by easily navigating to business pages and career experience opportunities. With a simple click, students are prompted to populate information such as name, age, grade and a brief description of their interest to share with school staff to request connection to an experience.

  4. Connections Are Easily MadeStudents experience first-hand what it might be like to work for an organization, their interests are sparked, and their goals begin to form. Educators strengthen communications with business and can bring forth lessons in their classroom that will help prepare their students for a successful future. Businesses meet the workforce of tomorrow and have a platform to share exciting opportunities and important information with young people and educators.

Types of Experiences

Cooperative EducationCooperative education is a structured method of combining classroom instruction with occupational instruction. A cooperative education experience, commonly known as a "co-op", provides academic credit for structured job experience. Co-op allows for the teaching of the technical skills, knowledge acquisition and workplace training essential to students. Students with targeted career goals are molded with related employment experiences while they attend planned periods of classroom theory.

Guest SpeakerBusiness guest speakers are invited into the classroom to speak to students and provide an opportunity for them to learn first-hand from an industry expert. The guest speaker may provide a perspective on their personal career journey, the types of jobs that are available within his or her field, and the knowledge, skills, education and preparation needed to enter and advance within that given career field.

Industry TourAn industry tour allows groups of students to visit a worksite and observe work-related activities first-hand. Typically, students will learn about the various types of jobs the company has to offer, the education and training needed to compete for these jobs and whether or not there is room for advancement. Students may also learn about the work environment and employability skills needed to be successful within the company. There are likely opportunities to ask questions and get answers directly from people who work at the company, so it is encouraged students come prepared with questions for the employer.

InternshipAn internship places the young person in a temporary position to gain valuable career experience and insight about a career of interest. Learning objectives and job duties are specified, student performance is assessed and employer feedback is solicited. High quality internships hold young people accountable as part of the team and require utilization and enhancement of employability and occupational skills. Internships may be paid or unpaid and are sometimes utilized to satisfy requirements for a class, program or credits within a field of study.

Job ShadowStudents gain exposure to careers of interest by working with business professionals and 'shadowing' them. Though time frames for job shadows can vary, often times students spend several hours, or sometimes several days, observing an experienced professional on the job. By visiting a workplace, exploring a career field and industry and experiencing a typical day on the job, students can determine if the career and industry fits their career aspirations and values. Multiple job shadows allow students to see careers of interest first-hand and can be an important learning opportunity as they decide on a career pathway.

MentoringMentoring allows students to navigate their career pathway journey through gaining first-hand knowledge from an adult who has career and life experience. Students are matched one-to-one with an adult professional in a chosen field of interest to explore a career, career interests and related workplace and career development questions. The mentor serves as a resource for the student by sharing insights and providing encouragement and guidance about the workplace, work ethics, careers and educational requirements. One goal of mentoring is to improve the well-being of students through support given in academic, social and personal means.

Mock InterviewIn a mock interview, a business professional meets one-on-one with a student and conducts a simulated job interview. This gives the student the opportunity to practice professional dress and etiquette. Mock interviews also give students the opportunity to answer questions about themselves, their interests, their personal qualities and to market themselves as a prospective job candidate. This experience helps students learn what is expected in a job interview and improves the student's self-presentation. It is recommended that mock interviews be preceded by preparatory activities for the student, and the business professional should also receive a short briefing and sample interview questions. Approximately 15 minutes should be devoted to a mock interview, with five minutes of constructive feedback to the student at the end of the session.

Pre-ApprenticeshipA Pre-apprenticeship program is specifically designed and implemented in consultation with an existing, or developing, registered apprenticeship program. Pre-apprenticeships are formulated to assist in the development of a diverse and skilled workforce by allowing students to meet the qualifications needed for entry, and a graceful transition, into a registered apprenticeship program. Through a variety of approaches, pre-apprenticeships can be adapted to meet the needs of the students being trained, the employer or sponsor they serve, and specific opportunities within the local labor market.

Summer EmploymentSummer employment can be part or full-time and allow for students to learn about a particular workplace, the expectations of that workplace, how to work with others and follow directions, and to determine whether or not the field is a good fit for them. One of the best ways to build employability skills and learn what a transition to work might be like is to experience it first hand.

Volunteer OpportunityVolunteer opportunities provide support to programs and services that directly serve the community and others. These opportunities allow for students to develop and demonstrate critical employability skills such as leadership skills and working well with others. Students can also gain understanding of how they can positively impact their community, explore what activities they like and do not like, and learn about and build work ethic.

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