What does it mean to be Career Ready?

Career readiness involves three major skill areas: core academic skills and the ability to apply those skills to concrete situations in order to function in the workplace and in routine daily activities; employability skills (such as critical thinking and responsibility) that are essential in any career area; and technical, job-specific skills related to a specific career pathway.

Why should I become Career Ready?
Below is some information to consider as you make your career decisions.

Did you know:

  • Carpenters in the state of PA, make on average over $42,000.00 a year and that there are currently over 1,100 jobs for carpenters in PA?
  • Electricians in PA make on average over $54,000.00?
  • HVAC workers in PA earn on average over $41,000.00 a year?
  • There are over 500 job openings for machinists in PA?

How do I become Career Ready?
First, go to PA Career Zone and take an “interest inventory” by clicking on “Begin Assessment” in the Assess Yourself Section.
By establishing where your interests lie, you can begin to think about career choices and finding careers in those areas.
You next want to consider choosing a career area WHERE JOBS CURRENTLY EXIST. You can find the job information for Pennsylvania at: http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/pa_workforce_development/12865

When do I become Career Ready?
You become Career Ready once you have attained the necessary core academic skills, employability skills and technical, job-specific skills. “Since most of the career opportunities for today’s students will require some form of post secondary education, there are many times when students will not be able to acquire the necessary academic, technical or employability skills in high school that will allow them to be career-ready without further education and training,” the paper reads. “Additional knowledge and specialization in one or more of these areas is often required either immediately after high school or in the future, depending on a student’ career choices.”

Read more: Inside Higher Ed

Where do I go from here?
You need to look at career clusters and jobs within your interests. Arrange for a job shadow. Meet people who are in the jobs that you find interesting and ask them questions. Go to your counselor and ask for assistance. Seek summer employment or even volunteer work in a job that you think you are interested in. Have you ever considered attending a Career and Technical Center?

A)    A Career and Technical Center (CTC) can help you get ahead!

Where is the nearest CTC? See AVTS_School_Districts.pdf

The foundations for strengthening career readiness are already in place through career and technical education (CTE), which offers this unique blend of skills through comprehensive programs of study.

Industry Certifications: Many programs offered at area CTC’s offer Industry Certifications when you complete the program. An industry certification is a credential that validates the ability to perform certain basic tasks essential to a particular industry. These certifications are usually created by a particular company such as a CCNA (Cisco Certified Network Associate).

For a full list of PDE Industry Certifications recognized by the Bureau of Technical Education, See:  Industry recognized certifications for Career and Technical Education Programs

B)   Career and Technical Student Organizations (CTSO’s) are a great way to enhance students’ career readiness through diverse programming that is designed to enhance classroom instruction and four common organizational goals: leadership development; academic and career achievement; professional development; and community service.

    DECA – An Association of Marketing Studies
    FBLA – Future Business Leaders of America
    FCCLA – Family, Career and Community Leaders of America
    FFA – An Association of Agriculture Education Students
    HOSA – Health Occupation Students of America
    PYFA – Pennsylvania Young Farmers Association
    SkillsUSA – Skills USA Pennsylvania
    TSA – Technology Student Association

Did you know:

  • Students who participate in school organizations in 10th grade have higher high school grade point averages and are more likely to be enrolled in college at age 21 than other students.
  • In a study of student performance measures, FBLA high school seniors significantly outperformed their non-FBLA counterparts on four performance measures: ACT scores; SAT scores; GPA; and graduation rate.
  • According to TSA, of their 150,000 middle and high school student members, 100 percent are likely to graduate from high school and 75 percent are college-bound.

Check out these resource links:
For Students:

    www.acteonline.org
    careerready.about.com
    www.bestjobsusa.com
    www.bls.gov/k12
    www.careercc.com

For Counselors:

    www.acteonline.org
    CollegeandCareerReady.pdf
    WhatDoesReadyMean.pdf
    www.careerclusters.org
    www.eknowledge.com
    www.stem101.org
    www.bls.gov

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Lisa DeLorenzo
Workforce Development & Continuing Education Division

Phone (717) 736-4112

Email info@TechLinkPA.com