Career Pathways workshop held

Allison B. Hudson

River Parishes Community College partnered with Baton Rouge Community College to offer a Career Pathways seminar on January 24 and 25.  Over 70 guidance counselors, teachers and administrators in Ascension and East Baton Rouge Parishes were certified in Career Pathways Leadership.

Career Pathways is a national program that prepares high school students for college and/or employment.  More specifically, Career Pathways is a sequence of courses in an area of specialty organized in one of sixteen career clusters, which allows the students to consider and plan for their future.

The Career Pathways seminar provided counselors, teachers and administrators with the tools and resources to implement Career Pathways and an understanding of the connection of Career Pathways to economic development.   Counselors, teachers and administrators participated in 15 hours of instruction over two days.  Topics covered include academic achievement, Career Pathways systems, career planning and professional development.

Melba Kennedy, Director of Educational and Workforce Strategic Initiatives at River Parishes Community College, stressed the need for this training program. 

“This professional development gives high school counselors, teachers and administrators a better understanding about Career Pathways and tools and helps them be successful in implementing career pathways in their school systems,” said Kennedy.

Career Pathways is especially important this year, which is the first year incoming ninth grade students at Louisiana public high schools must complete an area of concentration, also known as a career  pathway, in one of sixteen career clusters to receive a high school diploma. 

Although Career Pathways has primarily focused on high school students transitioning into college or employment, Career Pathways also focuses on adults.  A national movement to implement Adult Career Pathways in colleges is gaining momentum.