Nebraska Summit on Career Readiness

a project of the Nebraska Department of Education in partnership with the Department of Labor, Future Force Nebraska, and Partnerships for Innovation

Profiles

After the shift-and-share report, teams returned to their breakout areas to develop a profile of a "career ready" individual from a particular perspective.

What challenges have you had in the last several hours? We need to focus on the personal side of things as well as the educational and professional sides. All of these elements of a person's life are interconnected. It is difficult to build a shared vision! It's difficult in a group of five, harder in a group of 80, and harder yet as we move to groups of 800 and beyond.

System-wide change is massively difficult. Before we worry about how to make the big changes necessary, we need to come to some agreement about what we're trying to do.

 

Short cuts (jump to the team work and the conversation that followed):
Team 1
| Team 2 | Team 3 | Team 4 | Team 5 | Team 6 | Team 7 | Team 8 | Team 9 | Team 10 | Team 11 | Team 12 | Conversation

Team One - Large Company CEO

 

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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a large company CEO.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a CEO would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a CEO in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Carol Andringa, Jeff West, Karen Stohs, Marty Mahler, Micki Hernandez, Rebecca Wrede

We focused on our top three items. We included "Success Skills" which includes a lot of the traditional soft skills. KSA - Knowledge Skills and Ability - are those skills necessary for a particular field. Finally, the 21st Century Learner - the ability to adapt, comfortable with technology, etc.

How do you measure these skills? We should offer a Career Readiness Certificate. A portfolio and references model can be effective. We can develop a credential that is recognized by industry. We can develop a common local performance assessment that shares some elements in common across communities. The state assessments and standards need to be further developed and communicated.

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Team Two - High School Teacher

 

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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a high school teacher.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a high school teacher would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a high school teacher in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Bill Eakins, Carol Renner, Gregg Christensen, Joe Higgins, Kelly Christensen, Stacy Athow

Our perspective was that of a high school teacher. A teacher is normally looking for all of the ideas at the top of the board from their graduates. There are some content "core" knowledge and skills. There are thinking skills. And there are Soft or Foundational Skills (although I like the term "Success Skills" from Team One's report).

How can you assess these? We assess the core content areas all the time. We can measure outcomes for the thinking skills through portfolios or other tools. We do not assess the Success Skills very often anymore - we do it in Elementary School and again in college, but we need to reintroduce it in the high school years.

A report card will include the traditional grades for core content, but it will also include information about the success skills. You might get an A in math, but have a very poor work ethic.

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Team Three - Teenager

 

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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a teenager:

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a teenager would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a teenager in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Jean Brown, Jeff Cole, Liane Philmalee, Mike Wortman, Pat Timm, Donlynn Rice

We took on the perspective of a teen. The 2015 world will be very dynamic and interactive. Students will connect using technology and that will prepare them for the workforce. One key indicator will be your number of Facebook friends. We need to be able to think on our feet and figure things out. We like the idea of portfolios - this captures what we learn in the classroom and encourages us to take it out into the community. Being part of a team and holding leadership positions in sports and other community activities will be very important metrics for future success on a team.

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Team Four - College Student

 

Context
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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a college student.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a college student would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a college student in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Dean Folkers, Jane McClure, Bob Hastings, Peter Kotsiopulos, Sue Burch, Tim Erickson

We looked at the college student's perspective. Students really want to know how to make money, but there is great depth underneath that. They need interpersonal and intrapersonal skills . They need to have critical thinking skills and flexibility. And they need to have work values -- they need to know how to succeed, be promoted and grow in their lives and careers.

We like the portfolio approach. Specific skills could be measured by specific companies.

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Team Five - Parents of 3 (9, 12, and 16 yrs old)

 

Context
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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a parents of 3 (9, 12, and 16 yrs old).

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that parents of 3 would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that parents of 3 in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Bart McCoy, David Gordon, Dave Buchholz, Terry Snyder, Julie Sorensen, Rich Katt

I am a business person in a room full of educators. Our perspective was that of a parent. What does career-readiness mean to this parent? They need the right combination of core knowledge and specific content skills. We need to measure the right combination through qualitative and quantitative measures. We need to measure Ethics and Personal Responsibility through both overt and covert measures. We will measure Productive, Effective Communication through both end-product assessments and group-and-individual assessments. The business community must be part of the process to develop all of these assessments.

We also need to demand some changes of the business world. Old guys like me are trying to incorporate these 20-year-olds into our businesses, and in many cases, these young people are much more knowledgeable than we are. This is a tough thing for us Baby Boomers.

We seem to be looking at this challenge through a pretty white, Anglo-Saxon perspective. We need to understand the immigrant and minority perspectives much better.

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Team Six - Government Agency

 

Context
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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a government agency.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a government agency would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a government agency in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Bonnie Mayer, Jill Finkey, Jim Scheer, Richard Ross, Steve Joel, Willie Barney

Our perspective was that of a government agency. The core elements were Foundational Skills, core knowledge, core values, and personal accountability.

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Team Seven - Not-for-profit, Mission Driven Organization

 

Context
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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a Not for Profit – Mission Driven – Organization.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a Not for Profit, Mission Driven Organization would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a Not for Profit, Mission Driven Organization in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Cindy Johnson, Dave Gee, Don Johnson, Joan Modrell, Linda Peters, Nicole Coffey

We were a mission-driven organization like the Girl Scouts.

A lot of our ideas fell into three big groups. Adaptability is important. Compassion is a very important metric for a mission-driven organization. You have to be able to stand up for the people that you represent - this is especially hard to do when you don't agree with everything that they're doing. Compassion can be measured through observation and surveys.

Communication skills are critical in every career - we have to be able to communicate what we're doing and we have to be able to understand the perspectives of others. This is measured through demonstration.

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Team Eight - College/University Professor

 

Context
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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a college / university professor.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a college / university professor would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a college / university professor in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Cherie Larson, Elizabeth Mulkerrin, Erika Volker, Marty Gilson, Patty Campbell, Steve Hollinrake, Summer Stephens

Our perspective was that of a professor.

Work ethic can be measured by attendance and passion for your work. We should stay in touch with our graduates to measure their progress. We can measure content knowledge through workplace demonstration. We want our graduates to earn enough money to give back to the foundation. Interpersonal skills can be measured by checking in with our graduates.

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Team Nine - HR Director

 

Context
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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of an HR director.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that an HR director would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that an HR director in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Becky Golden, Catherine Lang, David Gordon, Julie Hippen, Kandy Imes, Kelly Means, Vicki Scow

We were an HR Director. Our top three items were Dependability (being on time and ethics), Global Literacy (self-awareness and bilingual skills), and Collaborator (communication, problem-solving, imagination).

How will we measure these things? Personal interviews, screening tools and portfolios will be useful.

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Team Ten - Small Business Owner/Entrepreneur

 

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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a Small Business Owner/Entrepreneur.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a Small Business Owner/Entrepreneur would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a Small Business Owner/Entrepreneur in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Beth Haas, Cynthia Baum, Janet Drudik, Matt Hatings, Melissa Hansen, Pat Roschewski

We were the entrepreneur. We would be looking for something a little different. We want someone as passionate as we are. We want someone to put their heart and soul into the business. We need them to have strong intra and interpersonal skills. We need them to be strong problem solvers with great technology skills.

How do we measure these things? We can do performance evaluations, measure the success of the businesses, and exit interviews.

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Team Eleven - Secondary School Administrator

 

Context
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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

Objective
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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a Secondary School Administrator.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a Secondary School Administrator would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a Secondary School Administrator in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Donna Vrbka, K.C. Belitz, Kathy Shirley, Larry Johnson, Ron Hanson, Scott Swisher, Sue Heine

We were high school administrators.

Our top three were Maturity, Content Standards, and did they demonstrate Initiative.

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Team Twelve - Postsecondary School Administrator

 

Context
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Now that we have examined future trends and thought about different scenarios might play out in 2015, the next part of this activity is focused on identifying the attributes and characteristics of a person who is career ready in 2015.

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Please answer the questions below from the unique perspective of a Postsecondary School Administrator.

>> Brainstorm a list of specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics that a Postsecondary School Administrator would say defines a person who is “career ready”.  These are areas in which each person should be proficient.  Each area can be named, described, and measured, and would enable you to know that a person is career ready.

>> Choose the three specific and important skills, qualities, or characteristics – that a Postsecondary School Administrator in year 2015 would say are the most important – and describe them in as much detail as possible. 

Make sure to indicate how one would know  that an individual was indeed career ready.

Report Out - Carolee Ritter, DeLayne Havlovic, Donelle Johnson, Karen O'Conner, Kate Bolz, Pat Narouth, Rebecca Valdez

Our perspective was a post-secondary administrator.

Our top three were Inter- and Intra-Personal Skills (self-reflection is important), Academic, Technical and Thinking Skills (it's important to know how to learn), and Global and Social Awareness (includes cultural competency and social consciousness).

We would use assessments, portfolios and evaluations to measure all of these.

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Conversation

Before we move into our next round of work, let's discuss what themes and patterns you heard in each of these reports.

Communication is important. Problem-solving and critical thinking were strong themes. Intra- and Inter-personal relations were important. Personal Ethics was a strong theme. Global and Social Awareness. Assessment through performance and portfolios.

Most reports included a core set of content knowledge and skills. Intrinsic motivation to learn - there were lots of variations on this theme. Some of these important concepts are very difficult to measure.

We have 532 communities in this state. Over 400 of them have less than 3000 people in them. 52% of the businesses will turn over within a 10-year period. The skills we're training into the workforce must be adaptable enough to match this turnover. We must also train people to think about themselves in much more entrepreneurial ways.

One researcher has postulated that healthy rural communities are essential to the health of a nation. They are transforming rural schools into economic engines to keeping the rural communities vital.

What other patterns did you see?

There is a need to collaborate between education and business on the evaluations and assessments.

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