Job ready high school students
Ann Everett, CTE Director at Medical Lake High School in eastern Washington is motivated. She is not only a teacher, but a clear leader who has a passion for bringing tangible work preparation and experience to her students through online career-based learning.
Career and Technical Education students at Medical Lake High School are pictured with Mary Kaye Bredeson, center director; Brian Burrow, instructional coordinator for Center of Excellence and Ann Everett, CTE director at Medical Lake high school (far right).
Everett believes that by using a web-based career assessment tool in the high school classroom, "We have a marriage that bleeds into academics and workforce development." The tool she is referencing is called KeyTrain and it provides topical career training to students in Medical Lake's career and technical education program.
Students who are preparing to go directly to a four-year college or those going into a community college or to work can take the program. At the end of the online career-based study, students can take a test called National Career Readiness Certification (NCRC) to become qualified for the workplace. This topical standarized testing is being used by industry as well for pre-employment testing.
Learning teamwork and locating information along with applied math are key areas of the training provided at Medical Lake High School. Abby Morrison and Gracie Pruchnic, the students pictured above have both participated in the work readiness training. Abby, pictured in the white shirt on the right said that she studied and passed NCRC as a freshman because, "I wanted to set myself a part from other teenagers my age. I actually used it (NCRC certificate) to get a job this past summer." She is hoping to become a trauma nurse by attending either Seattle Pacific University or Stanford in another year. The career preparation she has taken at Medical Lake High School has helped her academically while preparing her with workplace skills.
For Gracie, now in leadership at the high school, taking the "teamwork" portion of KeyTrain helped prepare her for leadership this year as a senior. She is hoping to go into teaching for a career and noted that the KeyTrain software was "much harder than I thought it would be," but resolved that she was glad it was because she learned from it.
"Online learning is the wave of the future," Everett notes and adds, "Our students need to learn how to take a class on the computer and learn the self-management skills that come with that." Beyond learning discipline and completion and testing of modules, the students also learn much needed soft skills for the work place such as communication, body language and conflict resolution. Everett says that, "What KeyTrain does is it takes academics and applies it to real world work."
She noted that there are I.Q. tests, but the E.Q. (emotional quotient) testing is also a part of KeyTrain and helps to create a more well-balanced student.
The testing is available to adults at Washington's WorkSource centers for those changing or seeking new careers. Movement toward a more widespread offering of the program in high schools across Washington State has begun and really comes down to funding. Mary Kaye Bredeson, director of the Center of Excellence is seeking opportunites to provide more training and testing at the high school level thorough our state legistalure.
More information from www.keytrain.com
|KeyTrain is the complete interactive training system for career readiness skills, based on ACT's WorkKeys®assessment system and the National Career Readiness Certificate.|
|The National Career Readiness Certificate is the national standard in certifying workplace skills. Requested and required by employers across the nation, the Certificate allows individuals to demonstrate their level of skill in the most common skills required for success in the workplace.|