July 15, 2021

Career Navigator News is a monthly newsletter from your Career Navigators, MaryAnne Smith and Nick Wobig.

New to FutureForward™ June 7 - July 14

Daren Wingert, Leading Edge

CTE Exploration Event

Students from the BCC will have an opportunity to get some hands-on experience with local businesses at a Career and Technical Education (CTE) Exploration Event on Thursday, September 23. This event will be hosted by Caledonia Area Public Schools, and the other BCC schools will bus students in to interact with local businesses and professionals and learn about potential career opportunities. We are excited at the potential this event has; with four businesses already committed, we already have a diverse group of professionals and industries.

If your business would like to be represented, or you know someone who would be interested in an event like this, please have them contact us or fill out the questionnaire found here.

Skills for Any Industry

Time and time again, business and community partners identify the number one asset of employees is strong soft skills. They want employees who will reliably show up, give 100% effort, and be willing to learn job-specific skills as the need arises. Soft skills translate to and apply in work environments of any industry.

September 2021 is the start of a collaborative effort to improve soft skills in students. A soft skills curriculum, known as Rubin Emerge, will be embedded into advisory time (i.e. W.I.N.) and individual classrooms across the BCC. The self-paced, student-led modules are full of 20-25 minute activities. Students who successfully complete 30 hours of the modules and activities will earn a premium “Employability Skills for Communication” certification, which can be showcased on resumes and LinkIn profiles. Badges include:

  • Phone Etiquette
  • Email Etiquette
  • Email Etiquette Advanced
  • Unforgettable Resume & "Storytelling" Cover Letter
  • Advanced Networking Skills
  • Advanced Social Media Networking (LinkedIn 101)
We are interested in measuring the impact of this collaborative effort, particularly amongst employers. Teachers, community stakeholders, and area employers are invited to join the conversation of developing metrics and collecting baseline data this fall. Indicate your interest and availability in this Google form to participate.

Training Follow-Up Events for Professionals

On Tuesday, July 13, Southeast Service Cooperative held its first FutureForward™ 101 training for professionals. We invited all members of FutureForward™ to get a quick overview of the platform, answer questions, build up their profiles to be more inviting to students, and connect to topics of expertise for classroom guest speakers. We feel this first training was a success and will continue offering these trainings as an extra level of support for our professionals and businesses.

FutureForward™ 201 will be on Tuesday, August 3 from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. through a Zoom-based webinar. If interested, we invite you to register here

On top of these virtual webinars, we are hosting two in-person, live trainings to our BCC professionals and community partners. We will be utilizing the Four Seasons Community Center in Caledonia on Tuesday, July 20 for our FutureForward™ 101 training and on Tuesday, August 10 for the FutureForward™ 201 training.

Join in the discussion of how the schools are using the platform, how the business community can support them, and what our business partners want to gain from using the platform and working with the schools in their communities. If you are interested in joining us for one of these live trainings, please email BCCNavigators@ssc.coop to RSVP.

Redefining Ready! Cohort begins August 9

Are high school graduates prepared for the demands of life after high school? Five school districts in the Bluff Country Collaborative are piloting Redefining Ready! as part of a cohort in Southeast Minnesota.

Focusing on three areas, “Redefining Ready! is a national initiative launched by the AASA (The School Superintendents Association) to introduce new research-based metrics to more appropriately assess that students are college ready, career ready, and life ready.” The idea is to look at student preparedness from multiple perspectives besides standardized test scores, including industry credentials, attendance, and community service. For more information, visit redefiningready.org

Industry Partners

Our number of industry partners continues to grow, both on our new website and on FutureForward. As a reminder to all parties that are part of the BCC, we are using the new website as a landing page for folks to learn more about the Bluff Country Collaborative, what we do, why we do it, and how they can partner and work toward similar goals. All BCC schools are utilizing FutureForward for career exploration and career-connected learning opportunities, so we are still encouraging our industry partners to create and manage their FutureForward profiles as well.

If you know of a business that would like to be recognized as an industry partner, please refer them to the links below or have them contact Nick or MaryAnne for more information. 

Website can be found at www.bluffcountrycollaborative.org
For businesses that want to be on the site, click here

BCCNavigators on Facebook

Check us out on Facebook. Send us requests to follow your school and community organizations and events. Career-connected learning takes a village!

Contact Your Career Navigators:
MaryAnne Smith
& Nick Wobig
We are very excited to have things rolling and look forward to what we can achieve as a collaborative. 
Please don't hesitate to reach out to us at any time.

Thank you all, 
MaryAnne Smith: 507-251-4388
Nick Wobig: 507-273-9661
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July 20, 9 a.m.
FutureForward™ Training 101 - In-person event for BCC professionals and partnerships
August 3, 9 a.m.
FutureForward™ Training 201 - Virtual training for professionals and their companies
August 10, TBD
FutureForward™ Training 201 - In-person event for BCC professionals and companies
August 31, 2 p.m.
Educators' FutureForward Training - Virtual event for BCC educators and school staff
September 9, 3:30 p.m.
Educators' FutureForward Training - Virtual event for BCC educators and school staff (repeat session)
September 23
CTE Exploration Event
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