Business Education Partnership
The Business Education Partnership (BEP) is about connecting businesses and schools through partnership programs. This partnership offers career-related experiences and opportunities for students to learn about high-priority occupations and career paths available in our region. Through direct employer involvement in our programs, we not only increase the awareness of job opportunities in our region but also learn the skill sets and education needed to obtain those jobs.
All six counties are responsible for youth career awareness activities and are granted funding for activity implementation in their respective areas. Workforce Solutions’ staff serve the Clearfield and Jefferson county areas. Services to the remaining counties are primarily offered through the Discover Partnership, with Elk and Cameron counties being served by the Community Education Council (CEC) of Elk and Cameron and the Potter and McKean county area being served by the Potter County Education Council (PCEC).
This partnership is made possible through BEP grant funding from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, PA Department of Labor and Industry, Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).
Business and Education Partnership staff are available to assist school personnel and businesses with career awareness activities, limited by only their imaginations. Teachers, parents, students, and our local employers all benefit.
- Businesses share information on positions available, job duties and function, and the skills required for the job.
- Teachers provide their students with local and relevant information on exposure to careers and opportunities available in our region.
- Students/parents/guardians can explore opportunities and gain awareness of local businesses and the career pathways available to them.
Career Awareness Activities
Career Days, Careers on Wheels, Industry Days, Career Fairs, Career Connect, Career Cruises, Virtual Career Café, College Cruises, etc.
Company representatives and/or substitute(s) will conduct a simulated interview with students. This is typically done on site at the school location, virtually, or other (company) selected site.
Camps may be designed for specific occupation areas (i.e., nursing, construction, manufacturing, STEM, etc.) and/or specific groups of people, such as girls.
Financial Reality Fairs
These fairs offer an interactive experience in which students identify their career choice and then complete a budget for expected monthly expenses as well as the occasional “life” events that may occur. Similar to the game of LIFE.
Students may opt to shadow or closely observe an employee performing the duties of the position. Duration is typically 3 hours and occurs on lite at the company.
Guest speakers travel to the classroom to share their professional stories, knowledge, skills, and experiences with students.
On Site Tours
Students, parents, and teachers travel to the company to learn first-hand the skills, career pathways, and job duties required to work within the company.
Students will be shown specific skills used by a company and reproduce these skills in a hands-on activity.
Parent and Community Engagement
Awareness activities directed at parents and/or guardians to foster connections between the student, the school, the community and home.
Connecting the educator directly with a business to allow the educator see the skills needed for students to move through career pathways. Educators then take this information back to their classroom to develop real life learning scenarios.
If you are an employer, teacher, or school interested in making connections and partnerships focused on career awareness activities for students at the elementary, middle or high school level, please reach out to the following:
- Cameron and Elk Counties:
The Community Education Center of Elk and Cameron counties at 814-781-3437
- Clearfield and Jefferson Counties
Workforce Solutions for North Central PA at 814-594-0134
- McKean and Potter Counties
Potter County Education Council at 814-274-4877
Carl the Career Bear
Carl allows even our youngest students to experience excitement about future careers. Through his book, videos, and meet and greets, students are able to share in the fun and gain exposure to a variety of jobs.
Carl the Career Bear is available to Elementary schools in the North Central PA region. Together, Carl and our BEP Project Coordinator, facilitate career exploration with your students. Our Project Coordinator will start with a reading of Carl’s storybook, Carl the Career Bear. In this story, we follow Carl through video clips of various career opportunities he has filmed throughout our region. Students can even dress Carl in his work uniforms.
Carl the Career Bear also comes LIFE size. Primarily used for recruitment and promotion of career related events, Carl can travel to your school/business/event to get students excited about career exploration.
To request Carl, call or email Colleen Prechtl, Project Manager, at 814-594-0134 or email@example.com. Requests should include: Which Carl you want, a description of the event, date, time and location of event. Please indicate if you are able to provide an adult helper to accompany Carl during the event or if a staff/volunteer is needed.
We will review your request based on the availability of Carl (and staff) as well as how the event relates to workforce, careers, etc.
What's So Cool About Manufacturing (WSCM)
Created by the Manufacturers Resource Center (MRC) in Allentown, PA in 2013, the What's So Cool About Manufacturing? contest draws entries from teams across Pennsylvania. The teams of students and teacher coaches receive camera equipment, software, and professional guidance as they learn to script, record, and edit their video stories. The contest’s objective is to change students’ perceptions about manufacturing careers.
The What's So Cool About Manufacturing? contest for North Central PA features teams from Cameron, Clearfield, Elk, Jefferson, McKean, and Potter counties.
The Clearfield-Jefferson (CJ) Dream Team is comprised of employees mostly under the age of 30 working at area manufacturing companies. They help unlock interest among students to consider similar STEM careers. Dream Team members will be available for presentations at area schools and community events to talk with students about their own path to manufacturing.