(Rock County, WI)
A report highlighting the use of the County’s web-based career preparation and readiness platform, powered by Career Cruising, was released today. The Spring 2019 Inspire Rock County Report provides a snapshot of the activity, engagement, and trends associated with this workforce development tool.
Since the merger of the Inspire Rock County and the Inspire Madison Region databases in fall 2017, students have access to approximately 1,500 company profiles and more than 1,830 career coaches. The upside of this expanded pool is twofold. First, the career coaching benches are much deeper; thereby, offering more direct expertise for students to leverage. Secondly, more profiles equate to more businesses within a stone’s throw that students can incorporate into their future career-based learning experiences. While job shadowing requests may not always be logistically feasible during the traditional academic year, having advance knowledge about future internship and/or employment opportunities are excellent nuggets to incorporate into an Academic and Career Plan (ACP).
Speaking of ACP’s, the number of students and/or young adults using this platform to map out their future continues to rise. Of the 15,000+ student ACP’s that are captured by the software platform throughout the academic year, more than 9,700 of those portfolios have at least one saved career. Not surprisingly, three of the top five career clusters commanding the most student interest during any given month included: Arts, A/V Technology & Communications; Education & Training; Heath Science; and Science, Technology, Engineering & Math. Specific career interests within those clusters, such as veterinarian, video game developer, and zoologists are among the most frequently saved career choices. Each month, approximately 6,000 of those ACP’s have formally identified a higher education institution to pursue after graduating from high school.
Although student and instructor logins were not as robust as the previous academic year, nearly 105,000 logins were recorded. Meanwhile career-related page views numbered about 275,000, which was an 18% increase from last year’s totals. While the number of message board posts for this academic year trended lower than originally forecasted, these levels were solid and pushed the aggregate messaging figure past the 7,400 mark. The steady stream of inclement weather experienced during this past winter, as well as the accelerated catch-up activities resulting from those missed instructional days, definitely had an impact.
In terms of career-based learning experiences, the number of engagements and participants recorded during the academic year was extremely active. For example, the events held and/or sponsored by the school districts of Beloit, Janesville and Milton numbered more than 815. Combined, these activities reached nearly 1,875 students and accounted for more than 10,000 donated hours by area businesses and/or volunteers. Each of these measurements were higher than last year, with gains ranging from the four percent level to as high as 38%. While a pair of headline events, notably the October 2018 Manufacturing Day and the April 2019 Healthcare Day, contributed toward these numbers there was definitely a strong supply of engagement opportunities occurring throughout the year.
In addition, strong student interest in the 2019 Rock Internship Program nearly doubled the number of rising high school seniors that are participating in this six-week, paid earn-and-learn experience. As a matter of fact, these interns will participate in an onboarding and signing event next week before reporting to their assigned internship placements shortly thereafter.
For more information about career preparation and readiness in Rock County, please visit www.InspireRockCounty.org and/or connect