A sales occupation can be a good career choice for people with varying interests, since just about every product needs someone to take it from producer to buyer. For example, if you love science, you might enjoy working as a sales representative for scientific or technical products. If you enjoy construction, you might excel as a building materials representative. Not all sales occupations are high paying, but the table below reflects a number of sales occupations in which workers earn higher than the national median ($16.27/hour).
Spring break is a break from school, right? Rest, relaxation, permission to be a sloth …? However (depending on a whole multitude of factors), if you completely adopt the ways of a sloth, you’ll discover a downside; having nothing to do and no schedule to keep actually saps your energy. If you want to enjoy every minute of your break, you’ll balance rest and relaxation with an ambitious to-do list! Here are five suggestions for what to include on that list:
1. Course Planning
No matter what grade you’re in, it’s a great time to consider your class schedule for next year. Does your schedule accurately reflect your plan for the future? Are you on track for graduation, and taking advantage of every opportunity to be ready for the postsecondary options that interest you? Will you achieve Pathway Completer status as you graduate high school? This is also a great time to look at the Career and Technical Student Organizations and other extra-curricular options that support your college and career goals.
2. Work-Based Learning (WBL)
Spring break is really an ideal time to arrange for a job shadow, information interview, or a simple visit to a workplace because it’s “business as usual” in the world of work. To set up a formal learning experience, talk to WBL staff at your school. Alternatively, you could set something up with family or friends. For example, you could volunteer at a local business just for a day, or even a part of a day. The best work-based learning experiences will result in your own discovery of interests and talents and how they can be applied in the real world.
3. Visit a College Campus
College and university spring breaks are often different than K-12 schools, so it’s a great time to arrange for a campus tour – live or virtual. Most colleges will have information for future or prospective students on their websites. If you don’t see a link that gives you the options available for visiting the school, just find a phone number and call for information. While you’re on the website, click on all the other links for future students, too!
4. Explore Summer Learning Opportunities
Spring is the season when school districts, colleges and community agencies all start sharing their plans to keep students busy over the summer. From summer camps, to short-term training, to skill-building and credit recovery, the opportunities are many. However, some of the most popular programs fill up quickly. All the more reason to check the websites of organizations in your area and sign up early!
5. Apply for a Summer Job
It’s not too early to survey summer employment opportunities! Though not every employer is accepting applications, you can stop in and ask about the possibilities. Remember to look sharp, to speak clearly, and – if applications are being accepted on site – fill in every blank in your neatest writing. If the application process is online, follow through with every employer of interest to you. No matter whether the application is handwritten or online, think of it as the very first sample of work you’ll be submitting; you want it to impress! You can search for employers in your area using FirmFind. Or, you might want to be a “summer entrepreneur.” You can get started now by visiting with neighbors and distributing flyers that advertise whatever service you’re prepared to offer – child care, housecleaning, yard care, car washing, even “tech support!” Line up your clientele, and maybe even put in some weekend hours to build their confidence in your abilities and character.
Spring break is definitely the ideal time to jump-start your career planning and set goals for the summer and beyond. Tell Utah CTE what you did during spring break. Email your stories to UtahCTE@schools.utah.gov.
On Thursday, March 7, 2013 Utah Career and Technical Education (CTE) high school students across the state of Utah will participate in a Virtual Healthcare Interactive (VHI) live broadcast, in partnership with the Utah State Office of Education (USOE) and Intermountain Healthcare.
The two-hour event begins with students watching a pre-recorded Artificial Knee surgery followed by a live chat with surgeons/physicians using real-time technology. In conjunction with the live broadcast, students will receive exposure to a variety of healthcare careers related to the surgery as well as pre- and post-event curricula and activities designed to provide them with the background information they need in order to understand the surgery/procedure.
There will be nine broadcast sites across the state, including those within technology centers. Three-hundred and forty-three high school students from nine school districts and 30 high schools, and physicians from Intermountain Healthcare, will participate in this event. The participating school districts are: Alpine, Canyons, Carbon, Granite, Jordan, Nebo, Ogden, Tooele, and Weber. The participating high schools/technology centers are: Bonneville, Brighton, Carbon, Fremont, Granite Technical Institute, Jordan Applied Technology Center, Jordan, Lighthouse, Lone Peak, Nebo Technology Center, Ogden, Roy, and Tooele Community Learning Center.
With increased confidentiality concerns, Work-Based Learning experiences have decreased in the healthcare area over the last few years. Engaging students through technology allows hospitals to bring more students into their environment with limited liability exposure and minimal interruption to the hospital.
USOE Health Science Education Specialist Tara Bell says, “Because of HIPAA and other hospital regulations, it is very hard for students to do job shadows and internships in a hospital setting. With Virtual Healthcare Interactive, students not only learn about the different careers involved in patient care, they get to virtually step into an operating room. VHI allows for opportunities that students would not normally have through the pre-event activities, the pre-event site visit, and the live event.”
“Watching a virtual surgery furthered my knowledge
about being a surgeon and it had a big impact on my career decision.”
Alex Brown, student Jordan Applied Technology Center
Healthcare is one of the largest and fastest-growing industries in the U.S., employing over 18 million workers in more than 200 careers. According to the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, the U.S. will need 5.6 million more healthcare workers by the year 2020.
Spencer Chugg is a student at Pleasant Grove High School and an FCCLA State Officer. He has been involved in FCCLA since 2007 and attributes his success in school to his association with FCCLA. “FCCLA has affected my life in ways that are impossible to describe,” says Spencer. “I am so glad that I got the chance to ‘climb to my future’ with FCCLA.”
Question: Spencer, what made you decide to run for an FCCLA state office?
Answer: This is a hard question to answer since there are so many reasons! At my first FCCLA State Convention I saw the state officers stand up on the stage in their official uniform and at that moment I knew I wanted to be a state officer. It was something I knew I had to become. It was then my life goal to become an FCCLA State Officer. I wanted to try out in 8th, 9th, and then 10th grade, but I didn’t get the chance. Where am I now? I’m the Utah FCCLA State Officer of Community Service!
Question: As Vice President of Community Service what are your responsibilities?
Answer: There are the basic responsibilities required for all state officers and responsibilities of my office. All state officers are required to submit a State Officer Report by the 10th of each month, attend chapter meetings, participate in projects, carry out workshops for State Fall Leadership, attend and organize an Area Conference, complete “Power of One” units, submit pictures of activities, and submit two articles for the FCCLA newsletter. My responsibilities are to write an Outreach Service Project article for the FCCLA newsletter, plan and coordinate a service project at State, and coordinate member incentives for affiliation.
Question: You recently participated in the CTSO Day on the Hill event at the Utah State Capitol. What was that experience like?
Answer: While at the Capitol I had the opportunity to answer many questions about FCCLA. Many people at the Capitol were government officials, employees, educators, or visitors. I had the opportunity to share basic facts about FCCLA and how the organization has affected my life. Many people had no idea what FCCLA was all about. I was given the chance to share my testimonial and tell how FCCLA has affected my life. I hope while I was there I got the chance to affect someone else’s life.
Question: What FCCLA event has had the most impact on your life?
Answer: The event that most affected me was when my FCCLA chapter (Pleasant Grove High School) did a service project where we helped children learn to ride bikes safely to school. Recently, my friend Rustin was run over by an SUV while we were walking home from school. From that point on I was determined that I would try to teach safety, to the best of my ability, to children. I learned from that experience that FCCLA was not work, but service.
Question: Tell us about the FCCLA “Climb to Your Future” initiative.
Answer: This year, our state FCCLA motto is “Climb to Your Future.” I think this models most of my FCCLA experience. I have had the chance to participate in FCCLA for almost six years. During this experience I have been changed so much. When you participate in FCCLA’s “Climb to Your Future”, you learn and get stronger. FCCLA makes you stronger physically and mentally. One of the best ways anyone can climb further into their future is by becoming an FCCLA State Officer. The opportunity to be an FCCLA State Officer this year has given me experiences beyond my wildest dreams. I have had the opportunity to go to Orlando, Florida, Washington D.C., and travel throughout Utah. Working with adult leaders and the FCCLA members has given me the opportunity to be an intimate part of FCCLA. The experiences I have gained will last a life time.
Question: What would you say to students thinking about joining FCCLA?
Answer: Do not let anything stop you from joining FCCLA. In FCCLA you get the chance to gain recognition for your accomplishments, travel throughout the state of Utah and to national conferences, participate in competitive events, network, make new friends, and develop leadership skills. I would then give a testimonial about how FCCLA has changed and affected my life. And say to each one, don’t let fear hold you back from running for a state office.
Question: How has your involvement in FCCLA prepared you for life after high school—college and career?
Answer: One of the best ways FCCLA has prepared me is through the classroom. FCCLA is directly linked to Career and Technical Education. FCCLA is classroom integrated through FCCLA national programs, competitive events, and service learning projects. The instructor’s standards of education are linked to the “Mission and Purposes” that guide the organization. I plan to be a teacher and through FCCLA I have seen what it is like to be a teacher. I learned how to plan and teach lessons and workshops. I can use the FCCLA planning process for all my goals and activities. FCCLA has made me organized and ready for college!
Spencer graduates in May and plans to continue his education at Utah State University where he will study Family and Consumer Sciences Education. He also plans to study Culinary Arts at Utah Valley University. Spencer wants to become a ProStart teacher and eventually an FCCLA adviser.
“My experience shadowing at the Unified Police Department was a stressful and interesting time. Friday was like everyone woke up and looked in the mirror and said, ‘I think I’m going to do something stupid and illegal today!’ The phones were ringing nonstop and everyone was just so busy. I learned that you have to have common sense to help someone when they call 911 or to report something stolen. How the system works is that dispatch receives calls in their queue and then they deal with each situation.
“It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to work in dispatch. At times the phones were dead, but other times [the phones were ringing] nonstop. They let me listen in on the phones and the radio. I had so much fun at my job shadow experience and I would love to do it again! It was such a positive experience in helping me choose my career. I won’t say that I want to be in dispatch, but it was amazing seeing what they do every day.”
Jacklyn encourages students thinking about participating in a job shadow “to get out of their comfort zone.” She says, “It’s was my favorite activity by far. It’s was a lot of fun; go out and network!”
Talk to your school counselor about participating in a job shadow and experience “real-life” work situations that will help you understand how classroom learning is applied in the world of work.
CTE Pathway: Julia is currently enrolled in the Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Pre-Engineering Program. She has participated in this pathway of pre-engineering studies for the past four years, taking six of the seven courses offered.
Senior Project: Julia’s senior project involved developing a solution to the air bag deployment stability for Autoliv. Her senior project team placed 1st in the competition, conducted by Autoliv and their engineering staff. Julia is currently the team leader of the district’s VEX Robotics Team. The team will be competing to repeat as a qualifier in the World VEX Robotic competitions to be held in Anaheim, California this spring.
Study Habits: Julia is an excellent student and earned a composite score of 25 on the ACT. While maintaining a 3.67 GPA, Julia works part-time for Farmers Insurance Agency, participates in a full-year internship with Fresenius Medical Care in Ogden, takes college concurrent enrollment courses, and has a full slate of Advanced Placement classes—English Literature, Calculus, U.S. History and English Composition. Julia applied and was a finalist at the Roy High School Science Sterling Scholar program.
Soft Skills: “Julia’s most notable features are her endless energy and positive attitude, about all things. She is personable, dynamic, and ‘she will get in your face,’ and that is always fun!” says Glenn Prisk, CTE Coordinator over the Project Lead the Way Program.
Future: Julia is committed to her career plan of achieving an engineering degree at a university in Utah.
Testimonial: “I look at many things through an inquisitive eye now that I have had science and engineering in my life. That is to say, I ponder about the energy involved in traveling and the resistance that cars present to their movement as a result of their design; I figure math problems and fuel costs now that I pay a bigger portion of my way. I just look at things through an analytical eyepiece. I owe that to my involvement in school and specifically to physics and engineering. Since becoming involved in PLTW I have had to become more focused about my studies. Before, school was just school, random classes were being taken for credit. Now, with my [Project Lead the Way] Pathway involved and the goal to achieve an engineering degree, I feel that I am really focused on the task at hand! I enjoy the competition in classes where I am a minority by gender. I have a reason to go to school and a goal to achieve as I am now looking forward to graduation. I am truly excited about my future and all the things that are in front of me.”
Utah CTE congratulates Shaylee Renner, a student at Alta High School and HOSA member, who was the recipient of the 2013 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Youth Leadership Award. Shaylee was one of 15 students across Utah who received this award.
On January 21, 2013, Shaylee was recognized at an awards ceremony, sponsored by the University of Utah; Office for Education & Community Partnerships for Diversity and the Youth Leadership Awards Selection Committee, for her commitment to service. At the awards ceremony Shaylee, along with 14 other youth leaders, received a plaque and a monetary award.
The awards ceremony took place in conjunction with the “Marade” (march & parade) where family members, teachers, counselors, friends and University of Utah personnel enjoyed the success of each award recipient.
Each year the University of Utah honors outstanding students from across the state of Utah for their dedication to the beliefs—social action, positive change and building bridges among cultures and communities—of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Shaylee aptly demonstrated these attributes in her community and in her daily activities.
Social action: As HOSA president, Shaylee invites professionals in the medical field to talk to HOSA team members.
Positive change: Shaylee’s mother was in ICU for one week and then lost her job. Shaylee had to stay positive and keep her mother’s hopes high.
Building bridges among cultures and communities: Shaylee, along with other HOSA members, helped the Kauri Sue Hamilton School—a school for children with special needs—with their Halloween carnival. This event gave HOSA members an opportunity to associate with children who are different than they are and who have special needs. Each child was given special attention and positive feedback by each HOSA member during the event.
“If you are going to give up for just a minute or just a day, then why give in?”
“Shaylee is mature beyond her years. Her ability to be compassionate has been developed through her personal trials with her mother’s illness. This has given her insight into people that struggle and have special needs. She is a delight to work with,” says Shauna Andrus, HOSA advisor at Alta High School.
Photo courtesy of the University of Utah
View a short video featuring some of the events during MLK, Jr. week at the University of Utah http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8EfRouj0teQ
CTE Pathway: Elias is currently enrolled in the Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Pre-Engineering Program. He has participated in this pathway of pre-engineering studies for the past four years, taking five of the seven courses offered.
Senior Project: Elias completed the senior research project for Autoliv on airbag devices.
Sports Enthusiast: Elias has been competing nationally as an Epee Fencer for two years. This had led to an early appointment to the Air Force Academy (AFA) Men’s Epee Fencing team. This recognition was the recruitment spark that made an aerospace engineering career possible. Elias has accepted an invitation and will compete as an Epee Fencer for the AFA, a Division I NCAA program.
Study Habits: While maintaining a 4.0 GPA, with a composite score of 29 on the ACT, Elias has participated and attended two International Science and Engineering Fairs (ISEF)—one in 2009 and the other in 2011. In addition to the PLTW courses, Elias has taken several Advanced Placement courses that include calculus and physics. Last month, Elias was nominated as Weber High Schools Science Sterling Scholar for the 2012-2013 school year.
Soft Skills: Elias is described by his teachers as being “highly self-motivated, creative, and a definite ‘outside the box’ guy.” Problem solving has become Elias’ trademark in his school studies.
Future: Studying aerospace engineering at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Testimonial of Elias: “PLTW is an incredible experience for me; it brought about a new aspect and method in which to approach problems that I came in contact within research and design. I felt that my educational pathways opened up and widen as each class I took brought about a new awareness towards fields of study that were alike, yet so different. I moved specifically from my interests in civil engineering to a fascination about aerospace engineering and the many new applications that we discussed in class. I felt my pathways broadened. After my experience in the senior Engineering Design class I felt confident in my ability to work with engineering mentors at Autoliv, who reinforced my studies, my viewpoints, and solutions to problems we were facing. I felt competent in my answers and knowledge that I demonstrated within my project. I was prepared to do the work asked of me within my mentoring experience.”
By the Sunset Ridge Middle School CTE Team
Jordan School District
Sunset Ridge Middle School is celebrating CTE Month with a variety of activities. We kicked off the month with our CTE students of the month. We nominate students each month for being outstanding in CTE. We present the students of the month with a water bottle, with the CTE logo on it, and a certificate.
We had a 7th grade assembly highlighting work-based learning. We invited Life Flight to come and teach our students about different careers in the health field. They were great and passed out Life Flight shirts and CTE prizes.
We have a CTE question of the day on the morning announcements. We ask a trivia question and have the students put their guess in a bucket. We randomly pick four answers. Those students who have guessed the right answer receive a prize from CTE.
We had back-sacks made with “CTE—Helping You Shoulder Life Skills” imprinted on the back, we ordered tape measures with the saying “CTE—Improving Skills Inch by Inch!” and ordered beanie caps with CTE embroidered on the front. The students love them!
We ordered pencils with “Sharpen Your Skills with CTE!” printed on each one. We are passing these out to every student in our registration assemblies later in February. That way every student is prepared to register and hopefully will see the importance of registering for CTE classes.
We are passing out Life Savers® candies with labels that read “Lifesaving Skills Are Learned in CTE.” We are also passing out Dum Dums® suckers with tags that say “Don’t be a Dum Dum. Sign up for CTE!”
We have posters about CTE Intro placed all over the school, we have TV ads on the school TV’s highlighting CTE month, and we have our CTE teachers on the morning announcements showing prizes and encouraging students to sign up for CTE classes.
We love CTE and are excited to celebrate CTE month this year!
By Mary Shumway
State Director of Career, Technical, and Adult Education
Utah State Office of Education
Have you considered participating in a job shadow or internship? Students throughout Utah, through the Career and Technical Education Work-Based Learning program, have the opportunity to participate in job shadows (short-term work experience) and/or internships (long-term work experience) while in middle/junior high or high school. Participation in a job shadow will help you understand how classroom learning is applied in the world of work. Through this structured career activity you will play an active role in learning by observing an employee at a work site to gain valuable career information.
There are many ways for you to learn. You can learn in the classroom or learn in a real work setting. Learning becomes even more meaningful when it is performed in a real work setting. Participating in a job shadow and/or internship will provide you with an opportunity to relate what you are learning in school to the world of work and can provide you with the following skills:
|Time management||Interpersonal communication||Leadership|
A job shadow experience typically will last from three to six hours at a work site. During the job shadow experience, you will:
- Observe a range of activities performed on the job.
- Receive information about possible career interests.
- Gain insight into the academic, technical and personal skills needed for a particular occupation.
- Understand connections between education and careers.
Although a job shadow and an internship are both typically unpaid, the knowledge you will gain, the experiences in which you participate, and the connections you will make will be invaluable. You may not receive monetary compensation for your time, but the experience and school credit you gain are huge benefits as you prepare for life after high school. Job shadows and internships take students one step closer to becoming college and career ready!
Imagine shadowing a Web developer and learning how to effectively write code for a new website.
Imagine shadowing an engineer and learning how the concepts you studied in your engineering design class
apply to a construction site.
Imagine shadowing a nurse and learning how to take blood from a patient and then sending it to the lab for processing.
Participating in a job shadow and/or internship will help to prepare you with education and skills for the ever-changing world of work. We encourage you to talk to the Work-Based Learning Coordinator at your school to learn how to get started. Each year over 150,000 students participate in fantastic work-based learning opportunities. Make sure you’re one of them!