Getting Ready for College, Careers, and the Common Core


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College, Careers, and the Common Core Bookcover

TAG: Career Readiness

Construct a Research Project Using O*net Data

Construct a research project where students collect information on three different jobs to report on the necessary qualifications (e.g., training, education, skills), job market outlook and salary predictions, and the day-to-day experience using O*net data on

Host a “Career Jumping” Event

Host a “career jumping” event, where students conduct two- to five-minute interviews with professionals from a variety of fields. Have the professionals talk about challenge and how they overcame obstacles.

Discuss The College Advantage: Weathering the Economic Storm

Share information on the changing nature of the US economy by reviewing and discussing The College Advantage: Weathering the Economic Storm by Anthony Carnevale, Tamara Jayasundera, and Ban Cheah.

Discuss Pathways to Prosperity: Meeting the Challenge of Preparing Young Americans for the Twenty-First Century

Read and discuss the report Pathways to Prosperity: Meeting the Challenge of Preparing Young Americans for the Twenty-First Century, and consider the balance between career preparation and college preparation that is most appropriate.

Consider CTE Programs and 21st Century Skills

Consider how high-quality CTE programs that develop skills for twenty-first century careers can help students become more college and career ready. Does viewing these programs through the lens of college and career readiness, not job training, suggest any necessary changes?

Connect with Professionals with Nonlinear Routes to their Current Positions

Schedule a conference call with professionals who have taken nonlinear routes to their current positions. Have them share their pathway story to model how people change careers multiple times over their life, may have to move for a job, and may have to return to school or a training program at multiple points during a career.

Review Occupational Areas Studies on the NAGB Website

Visit the National Assessment Governing Board website to read the results of studies on the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed for different occupational areas (

Trace the Story of Your Community’s Evolving Workforce Needs

Trace the story of your community’s evolving workforce needs. How have these changes affected your students’ families? How do these personal experiences influence and shape local conversations about the importance of having all students ready for college and careers?

Identify Changes in Your Local Economy

Identify how the national and international economy have led to changes in your local economy and what the future prospects are for changes that will affect the knowledge and skills students will need if they wish to work and live in the community.

Evaluate Your School and Local High School Diploma Requirements

Evaluate your school and local high school diploma requirements. For what types of jobs or employment tasks would a student who met just the minimum graduation requirements qualify? If you could design a set of diploma requirements that prepared all graduates for college and careers, what would the requirements entail?

Business Roundtable Education and Workforce Committee

The Business Roundtable’s goal is to promote and develop a well-educated workforce, with an emphasis on the need to improve mathematics and science performance.

Pathways to Prosperity: Meeting the Challenge of Preparing Young Americans for the Twenty-First Century

A report out of the Harvard Graduate School of Education that explores the reasons for the United States’ national failure at college and career preparation and advances a vision for ways for the U.S. to regain leadership in educational attainment.

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