Career Exploration and Readiness for STEM

Career Exploration and Readiness for STEM


[Music]>>There’s almost 5 million young people between 16 and 24 in this country that are neither working nor in school. That’s
a tremendous amount of untapped talent.>>There’s a lot of jobs that are gonna be out there. They’re high-paying jobs. How do we get opportunity youth to see STEM careers as a future for them?>>So these are young people that have not had great success in the traditional k-12 system but actually are often very successful
in alternative models.>>And so we’re building a web-based tool where students or young people can make a collection of information that are experiences of
their own, work that they’ve been doing in the job sites, work that they’ve been
doing in classrooms, and they’ll have a portfolio. We’re calling it an e-portfolio, to help support them in furthering their careers, furthering
their education and making connections themselves between what it is that they’re learning and STEM opportunities and STEM careers.>>Just like a designer would have a portfolio and be able to pull up and show all their pieces, in
some aspects their portfolio is going to demonstrate all the things that they’ve
been doing in the course of YouthBuild to demonstrate their STEM knowledge. And it’s real, tangible examples.>>YouthBuild is where the project is going to actually take place and it’s a program that works with opportunity youth to
help them essentially rebuild their lives and it helps them complete their
high school education.>>We’ve leveraged a co-design technique with the YouthBuild students and staff. Every decision we’re making we are making sure they’re part of that decision, they’re part of that process. We have done card sorting where we get them to look at a feature or functionality and either put it in a
pile of “I will not use” or “I definitely will use this.” They’re also doing what’s called sticky dot voting. They’re putting sticky dots on their favorite features of what they really liked about that prototype.>>The e-portfolio they’re creating will also contain cases for students — young people — will be able to get information from others who may have been in similar shoes.>>We think this issue of STEM identity is also important and so we’re trying to find role models that represent and are models of success for these young people that represent them racially, ethnically, and in terms of life experience.>>Our hope is that students will see over time their progression in understanding STEM competencies. You know, where they started, where they end up, and what STEM competencies they really excel in.>>Ultimately, what we want to see is not the CEE-STEM tool live in the context of a research project, but live out in the world where a young person could take it to a prospective employer or could take it to college admissions officer and use
it as a way to demonstrate how much they’ve built these STEM skills and how
ready they are for these next steps. [Music]

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