Career Development Experience Toolkit Companion Piece

The new Career Development Experience Toolkit Companion Piece has been created by Education Systems Center at NIU in partnership with the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. The document is meant to be viewed in tandem with our Career Development Experience Toolkit, released in fall 2019, which adheres to the framework of the Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness Act for College and Career Pathway Endorsements (CCPE). While the CCPE framework is designed for high school students, the Toolkit and Companion Piece are also meant to serve any organization that seeks to provide rigorous work-based learning opportunities to youth. Career development experiences are part of Illinois’ broader work-based learning continuum and refer to a broad array of experiential learning that address the components included in the statutory definition of the Career Pathways Dictionary.

The purpose of this extension is to explore career development experiences and provide resources to address the needs of stakeholders outside of a traditional high school setting, including workforce development organizations, community-based organizations, and alternative high schools. This companion piece targets these organizations and employers to serve youth more inclusively by seeking to address disparities that are the result of systemic racism. To that end, it is critical that nonprofits, employers, and education providers connect youth who have been historically pushed to the margins with meaningful connections to careers.

The document includes community, host-led, and national models and considerations for ensuring success for opportunity youth, including defining equity, common barriers and solutions for engaging opportunity youth, virtual considerations, supports and services during and after career development experiences, and a robust appendix with templates and additional resources.

Overview Webinar for the Career Development Experience Toolkit Companion Piece

The Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and Education Systems Center hosted an overview webinar of the Career Development Experience Toolkit Companion Piece on Wednesday, June 16, 2021.

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