On Monday, September 25, approximately 40 engaged educators from 19 school districts gathered to learn about new opportunities and share their best practices in connecting area students to career opportunities and work-based learning.
Convened by Bryan Stewart, the Director of Workforce serving both the Montgomery County Educational Service Center and Learn to Earn Dayton, the day featured opportunities for these professionals to connect with one another and amazing resources to support students.
Career Champions are educators and engaged community leaders, designated by their district to bring best practices and valuable opportunities to students exploring their career options.
In honor of Manufacturing Month, the event kicked off with a short career video and a welcome by Bryan Stewart.
Speaking of the great turnout and full agenda, Stewart said, "This was our first Career Champions meeting of the school year, and it is truly exciting to see so many advocates for students from around our region meeting to learn more about resources they can bring back to their districts!"
Morning speakers included Gene Saunders from Congressman Mike Turner's Office, sharing information on how students can receive a letter of support to accompany their application to one of the highly prestigious military academies; Nick Smiley from the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) of the Miami Valley sharing information on Skilled Trades Appreciation Month and opportunities for student learning; and Jeff Brokamp from Junior Achievement provided an update on MFG Month.
As this isn't a group content to just sit around -- the late morning session included a site visit at Motoman where the group saw advanced manufacturing in action in our own backyard.
After lunch, a series of informational sessions helped to connect these Career Champions to resources from L2ED and MCESC that could benefit their students. They heard from Megan Cooper from Learn to Earn Dayton about how the organization is focused on data and partnerships to support degree attainment; Josie Muterspaw from MCESC's SEL team shared promising practices in mental wellness; Katie Grothaus, Career Navigator Specialist from MCESC, covered graduation requirements and important updates on instructional services; and Jacie Womack, Family & Community Engagement Coordinator, closed the session with important information about responding to the needs of the whole child.
"I love these professional development opportunities because you can see the educators meeting with leaders from around the region and brainstorming how they can bring it back to their districts. At the end of the day though, I’m excited to see what events, partnerships, and awareness is brought about by this program.” ~Bryan Stewart
It was a full and exciting day with lots of learning (and a lot of fun and camaraderie along the way). Thank you to MCESC for your efforts in coordinating and thank you to the many dedicated educators from across the region who take the time to join in the conversation as we strengthen career connections for all students.