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Contextual Learning Portal

College and Career Exploration


  • Project TitleCollege and Career Exploration
  • ThemeExploring your future options
  • Submitted ByJaime Hamilton/Michele Boyer-Vivori
  • OrganizationDrury High School
    Summer STEPS Program
  • Brief DescriptionAt-risk students transitioning from eighth grade to ninth grade developing college and career readiness skills.
  • Materials / ResourcesComputer/MASS CIS Database/Business Cards
    Your Plan for the Future Website/Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (tour) and website
  • Team membersMichele Boyer-Vivori/Jaime Hamilton
    STEPS Staff
  • Pre-requisite knowledgeBasic computer knowledge
  • Technical support neededComputer
  • Any modifications or extensions for particular student populations?None needed

Key Questions

  • Key QuestionsAs a 9th grader, how can I prepare to be more college and career ready? What skills are necessary to become college and career ready?
  • Connections: How or why was this topic identified? Why is it meaningful?This topic was identified due to the at-risk population based on grades and test scores, and the need for an introduction of college and career basics.
  • Background Research: What resources were used to find background information for this project?Resources included local college admissions office and former students who are successful in the business community. In addition, the website was used as well as Mass CIS.
  • Outcomes: What was the outcome? How was it shared or applied in the community?Students gained valuable knowledge of local businesses and careers that may be of interest to them. They were also exposed to a college campus and admissions process.
  • Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Parents/guardians were invited to a Service Fair and celebration where they were able to see work completed by students and their projects within the community.

Units / Activities

  • College Visit - 1 hourStudents visit local college (Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts) to take a tour, meet with admissions representative and have a Q & A with staff.Walking tour/No materials needed
  •  /project379_0098/IMG_1159_zps9f4301ae.jpg/project379_0098/IMG_1138_zpsda78f810.jpg
  • Your Plan for the Future - 30 minutesStudents will be introduced to the "Your Plan for the Future" website and will create an account. From there, they will explore the options available to them and work through some of the activities.Computers/School ID # to create account/Can be done in small groups or one on one
  •  /project379_0098/IMG_1271_zpsa3039239.jpg
  • Career Exploration -1 hourStudents will complete the PAR SDS (Self Directed Search) and come up with a list of 3 careers and identify one that they are interested in. They then created a business card for that career.Computers/SDS booklet/Business Cards
  •  /project379_0098/IMG_1282_zps8a7ada35.jpg
  • Guest SpeakersFormer Drury graduates came in to speak with students in a "round robin" type setting to introduce them to their careers. Students were able to ask questions in a small setting and then had the opportunity to share with the group the answers to their questions.Guest speakers/List of sample questions for students
  •  /project379_0098/IMG_1184_zps48d332fc.jpg

    View/Download File: /project379_0098/STEPS 2013.doc

  • Career Pathways GameStudents in groups of 4 were given a packet of careers and the different career pathways. They had to decide as a group which career matched to which pathway.List of careers/List of pathways
  •  /project379_0098/IMG_1215_zpse2ef8590.jpg

    View/Download File: /project379_0098/STEPS- Career Game

Instructional Techniques

  • Hands-on ExposureCollege visit, Career Pathways Game, Career Speakers
  • Group DiscussionCareer Pathways Game, Introduction of Your Plan for the Future, Report out from guest speakers
  • ResearchResearch career choices, research graphics for business cards
  • Student DirectedQuestions on college tour, questions to guest speakers, creation of yourplanforthefuture account
  • Web SearchYour Plan for the Future website, CollegeBoard website, MASS CIS, Business cards

Assessment Techniques

  • Oral PresentationPresented answers to questions that they asked during guest speakers
  • DiscussionPrior to guest speaker, after college visit, prior to MASS CIS and SDS
  • Informal sharingWalking around college campus, while working through the yourplanforthefuture website

Frameworks / Skills

  • CDE Benchmarks
    Technical and technological skills (e.g., blueprint reading and computer software management)
    (CDE Benchmarks)
  • CDE Benchmarks
    Technical literacy for career and life management (e.g., online banking, managing FAFSA online)
    (CDE Benchmarks)
  • CDE Benchmarks
    Skills in the planning process (focusing on the importance of preparation and future orientation)
    (CDE Benchmarks)
  • CDE Benchmarks
    Skills in establishing and modifying career management tools (e.g., resume, portfolio)
    (CDE Benchmarks)
  • 21st Century
    Communication and Collaboration Skills
    Articulating thoughts and ideas clearly and effectively through speaking and writing. Demonstrating ability to work effectively with diverse teams. Exercising flexibility and willingness to be helpful in making necessary compromises to accomplish a common goal. Assuming shared responsibility for collaborative work.
    (21st Century)
  • 21st Century
    Initiative and Self-Direction
    Manage goals and time; Work independently; Be self-directed learners. Go beyond basic mastery of skills and/or curriculum to explore and expand one’s own learning and opportunities to gain expertise.
    (21st Century)
  • 21st Century
    Leadership and Responsibility
    Using interpersonal and problem-solving skills to influence and guide others toward a goal. Leveraging strengths of others to accomplish a common goal. Demonstrating integrity and ethical behavior. Acting responsibly with the interests of the larger community in mind.
    (21st Century)

Tags = careers | Subject = Technology, CVTE | Grade Level = HS | Time Period = Summer | Program/Funding = 619/592 |
Direct website link to this project: