Career exploration resources are just a click away

We parents want the best for our children. We want them to grow up to be productive members of society with the ability to have a satisfying career that provides for themselves and their future families.

Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month is a great time to start your child on his or her career pathway. Here’s how you can help.

Today, there are more resources than ever before on career exploration and these are easily accessible through the Internet. Not only that, but they speak the language your teen listens and responds to. A good place to start is WiCareerPathways.org or the Career Interest Questionnaire provided by Wisconsin’s technical colleges.

What does your child enjoy doing? What are his or her interests? What gives them personal satisfaction? Does he like to figure out how things work? Does she enjoy computers? Perhaps your child has an entrepreneurial bent.

Find out what classes are offered at your local middle and high school that help students explore different career choices and encourage them to try different things. Many students are getting a head start on their futures through career and technical education offerings.

More than 90,000 Wisconsin high school students are taking career and technical education courses in fields like agriculture, business, family and consumer science, health occupations, marketing, technology and engineering. Some students are also engaging in dual credit, which allows them to earn both high school and technical college credit.

Ask your student’s guidance counselor or CTE instructor about the following dual credit options:

  • Advanced Standing
  • Transcripted Credit
  • Youth Apprenticeships
  • Youth Options

Witechcolleges.org provides videos for hundreds of career programs offered by the colleges.  Viewers can hear from instructors and students and see the equipment and technology available in college classrooms and laboratories.

Even elementary students can begin exploring career possibilities. Wisconsin’s technical colleges often have outreach events or summer camp programs that expose younger students to opportunities through technical education. Last summer saw camps on careers in culinary arts, video production, public safety, energy and robotics. These may help spark or further their interest in certain areas of study. Contact your local tech college to find out about events coming this summer.

Career and technical education opportunities abound in Wisconsin schools. Encourage your child to start their career exploration now. If they won’t listen to you, maybe they will listen to other students who have found great value in CTE. Share this video link in a text message or email or on your student's Facebook page. To quote one student: “Don’t wait. The opportunities are there. You just have to go find them.”