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Career Launch SD: Creating Student Work Experiences


Many businesses in Sioux Falls are facing the challenges that come with a growing economy, technology advancements and workforce demographics. With the baby boomers retiring and the next generation of workers unaware of potential opportunities, it has become increasingly more difficult to find skilled employees. 

To help combat this growing trend, a new program initiated by Governor Daugaard has been developed in hopes of helping to alleviate the workforce shortage. Career Launch SD increases student awareness of career opportunities in their communities to help meet South Dakota’s demand for a skilled workforce. 

Sioux Falls is one of four communities chosen to kick off this program. Four Career Advisors have been assigned to the Sioux Falls school district. These Career Advisors are placed in the high schools.

How does this work? Career Advisors work with students to help them identify already established skills and interests. The Career Advisors will then work with students to develop soft skills and other skills needed to succeed in the workforce. The goal is to soon be in the middle schools to start the exploration earlier in the student’s education careers.

The Career Advisors also develop relationships with local businesses to provide work-based learning experiences for these students. The goal is to give students exposure to career opportunities in their area, which in turn, will help the student make better informed decisions about future careers. The more hands-on the learning experience, the more likely a student is to discover and become excited about what industry they want to be a part of.

Some different types of hands on career learning experiences businesses can offer are:

  • Internships and work experiences
  • Job shadowing
  • Informational interviews
  • Classroom presentations
  • Career and post-high fairs
  • Registered Apprenticeships
  •  

As a business partner, they will expose their industry to youth in their area who may not know certain fields exist in their community. They will raise career awareness to help youth succeed and reach their potential. The business will also build a positive reputation in their communities. In the end, they could even end up with full-time, permanent employees. 

A businesses time investment can range from one hour providing an informational interview or class room presentation to several months providing an internship to 2,000 hours offering a Registered Apprenticeship. This all depends on what a business is able to offer.

Career Launch SD is a no cost service to both the student and businesses. It is designed to build our workforce pipeline and increase employee retention. For more information, please indicate your interest at careerlaunchsd.com. A Career Advisor will meet with you personally to get you started. 

Read more great articles from our WIN Source here: siouxfalls.com/WIN 

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