ACRN - America's Career Resource Network Skip all navigation links. | Home | About | Contact | Site Map | Glossary | Links |  
Link to Education Challenge Page Link to Economic Challenge Page Link to Career Development Page
Career Development Toolkit National Career Development Guidelines Improved Career Decision Making
Get Started:
Link to Students Start Page
Link to Parents Start Page
Link to Teachers Start Page
Link to Counselors Start Page
Link to Administrators Start Page
Link to State Information Page
Link to Resources Page
Link to Evaluation Page
Link to Calendar Page
For ACRN Directors
Link to Directors Login Page
ACRN – Education and Career Connection
Education and Career Connection Banner
September 2007 Issue

Download the pdf version of this Education and Career Connection [PDF].

In this edition of the Education and Career Connection


An after school program in Chicago called After School Matters has been reaching students across the city since 1990. After School Matters currently allows more than 25,000 students to pursue their passions through apprenticeships.

The first class consisted of 200 art students. The original location of the first class was a series of tents on vacant property in downtown Chicago known as Block 37. The program was originally founded using federal dollars earmarked for summer jobs for disadvantaged youths.

Students attend After School Matters three days a week for about three hours, and earn $6–$15. They learn job skills and are provided with hands–on instruction by mentors and industry professionals. Careers and opportunities for students include the performing arts, robotics, sports, singing, science, writing, dance, drama, digital editing, computer networking, and Web site design.

The program has found that it is helping students to fully develop their career paths and understand what skills they need in order to pursue particular careers. The program is offered in 58 schools, and partners with approximately 100 community groups and government agencies. After School Matters has found that the student participants are likely to have higher graduation rates, truancy rates, and success in their regular course work.

To view a video on After School Matters click–passions–after–school
For a news article on After School Matters click–school–matters–apprenticeships–adolescents

Back to top


Mississippi’s Career Resource Network has produced a number of resources, publications, and events for parents, counselors, students, employers, and ex–offenders. To give you an idea of what you can find at, some of its resources have been listed below.

The Mississippi Career Resource Network has:
  • A career center that is organized by clusters and connects users with available jobs and information on careers in those clusters.
  • SCANS Skills posters specifically modified for Mississippi.
  • A set of posters on Mississippis Fastest Growing Occupations in Career Clusters.
  • Mississippis Career Information System, MS Choices, which is used by middle schools, high schools, and community colleges. The tool is used for career exploration, career decision–making and educational and training planning.
  • Directions Career Tabloid a publication geared towards learners of all ages.
All of these resources can be accessed and downloaded from the Mississippi CRN Web site. Check them out!

Back to top


The construction industry currently projects an annual shortfall of 60,000 to 80,000 people despite being one of the nations largest industries with 8.3 million workers. By 2012 it is estimated that there will be a need for 1.1 million special trades contractors. This is in addition to managers, supervisors, and other professional positions in the industry that also need to be filled. The industry needs carpenters, plumbers, site supervisors, and skilled workers who have knowledge of forward planning, home integration technology, roofing inspection, land acquisition, warranty coordination and window treatment design.

In response to this shortfall, The Home Builders Institute, the National Housing Endowment, and the National Association of Home Builders joined together to create a careers campaign initiative called Make It Happen. The campaign is focused on providing counselors, parents, students, educators, and industry stakeholders with information on entering the residential construction industry.

The Home Builders Institute has designed a Web site – – that provides information, videos, and resources in English and Spanish for counselors, parents, and students to use in exploring careers in the construction industry. The Web site provides information on the industry, the education and skills needed for industry jobs, job search tools, and information on the wide arrange of opportunities available.

Back to top


Over 44 percent of postsecondary students in the United States are over the age of 24, although postsecondary education has traditionally been focused on 18 to 21–year olds. This rise in non–traditional adult learners in the last decade demonstrates a need for the United States postsecondary system to ensure that it is meeting the needs of its learners. The global economy of the 21st century is calling for more skilled workers which will require more certifications, trainings, and education to be geared towards adult learners.

In early 2007, the Employment and Training Administration released a report, Adult Learners in Higher Education: Barriers to Success and Strategies to Improve Results. This report looks at the numerous challenges facing non–traditional adult learners in higher education, and what obstacles they face in earning credentials with labor market value. As the report states, “;The industrial economy of the early 20th century that created remunerative work for unskilled labor has given way to an information and service economy that demands higher levels of academic and technical knowledge, as well as other skills such as good communication and problem–solving abilities.”

The ETA report looks at topics of supply and demand dynamics, accessibility, affordability, and accountability. It concludes with providing recommendations on addressing adult learners needs in higher education. The four recommendations that the report provides include the need to:
  • Develop federal–state partnerships to promote and test innovative approaches to increasing adult access to and success in higher education;
  • Update federal student financial aid programs to stimulate and support the postsecondary education of working adults;
  • Create a national system to track and report individual adult student outcomes over time; and
  • Establish research and development programs to encourage employer engagement in the postsecondary education of working adults.
The entire report can be downloaded at:

Back to top


In this nine minute podcast, Dr. Mary M. Yarbrough, the Dean of Workforce Education and Technologies at Calhoun Community College, discusses a new training programIndustrial Maintenance and Machine Tool Technology.

Dr. Yarbrough provides an overview of the $3.5 million grant the program received from the U.S. Department of Labor in support of workforce development. Working with the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs and Calhoun Community College, Dr. Yarbrough created a flexible training program for Industrial Maintenance and Machine Tool Technology.

This training program uses a modularized curriculum and consists of multiple delivery options. As Dr. Yarbrough discusses, students are offered multiple entry and exit points into the program to develop the skills they needed based on their goals and industry needs. The program was designed with entry level, intermediate, and advanced training. The need for entry level skills created a general program of applied technology that has general core content, plus technical training and applied learning. The program identified the specific knowledge, content, and skills that cut across technical skills and brought together industry to develop a stronger co–op program.

Access the Podcast at:

Back to top


The need for workers in the hospitality is growing, with 2012 projections indicating that there will be 1.6 million new jobs in the industry. There is currently a shortage of qualified workers to fill these jobs.

To address the lack of middle and high school students’ knowledge of career opportunities in the hospitality industry, the U.S. Department of Labor provided funding to create a teen–oriented Web site ( that showcases the industry’s myriad career opportunities.

This grant was awarded under the President's High Growth Job Training Initiative, as implemented by the Employment and Training Administration at the United States Department of Labor, Additional funding was provided by Johnson & Wales University, the Multicultural Foodservice & Hospitality Alliance (MFHA), NIIT (a global training and educational program development organization), and Advertising Ventures, Inc. for the development and maintenance of the Web site.

The Web site was designed as an exploration tool for students to explore jobs and careers in the hospitality industry. The Web site showcases real hospitality workers and the education and training they pursued to attain their jobs. It also allows students to explore their interests, goals, and future lifestyles to determine if the hospitality industry is right for them!

Back to top


At the NCDA Conference in Seattle, Washington in July 2007, the Centers of Excellence (CoE) Accreditation were announced. The Center for Credentialing and Education (CCE)’s Centers of Excellence (CCE) accreditation will provide a valuable mark of distinction when working with funding sources, as well when marketing to individuals and businesses seeking career and job development services.

This new accreditation identifies career and workforce development programs meeting high standards and operating with continuous–improvement and customer–focused services.

. The CoE application and information on accreditation levels are available at www.cce–

Back to top


Innovation and Entrepreneurship in the States
U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institute for a Competitive Workforce (ICW) Summit

September 24–26, 2007
Washington, D.C.
Web site:

Fourth Annual High School Policy Conference
From No Child Left Behind to Every Child A Graduate
Alliance for Excellent Education

October 4–5, 2007
Washington, D.C.
Web site:

National Tech Prep Network and Career Pathways Annual Conference
October 10–13, 2007
Louisville, Kentucky
Web site:

International Career Development Conference
Creating a Sustainable and Resilient Future

November 7–11, 2007
Sacramento, California
Web site:

22nd Annual Careers Conference
Call for Proposals: Deadline September 30, 2007

January 28–30, 2008
Madison, Wisconsin
Web site:

Innovations 2008
March 2–5, 2008
Denver, Colorado
Web site:

American Counseling Association
March 26–30, 2008
Honolulu, Hawaii
Web site:

2008 American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Annual Convention
April 5–8, 2008
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Web site:

American School Counselor’s Association (ASCA)
Setting New Standards

June 28–July 1, 2008
Atlanta Georgia
Web site:

Back to top

Thank you for your interest in America's Career Resource Network. CRNs and Guidance Supervisors are encouraged to forward items of interest for the Connection to Kristine Nowicki at

Download the pdf version of this Education and Career Connection NewsFlash

To view past issues of the ACRN Education and Career Connection News Flash!, please use the drop–down menu below:

Maintained by the National Training Support Center

You need Adobe Acrobat Reader to read PDF files.  You can download the reader for free from Adobe's Web site