Missouri joins job network to connect students to careers

Jun 25, 2012

Missouri students are expected to see a change in career guidance in school as part of a new initiative to better prepare students for their future. Missouri is one of six states that joined the Pathways for Prosperity Network this week.

The Pathways for Prosperity is a project to improve the connection between schools and the workforce to try and provide students with the skills they need for the jobs they want. One goal of the initiative is to engage with the business community to see what types of jobs are available and what skills those jobs require. The director of the project, William Symonds says they also aim to create what they’re calling multi-pathways. He says this is important for students because he thinks four year college programs are overrated.

“What we mean by multiple pathways," says Symonds, "is that the road you should take really depends on what you are trying to accomplish, and for many jobs a four year degree is simply not necessary. Only about one-third of the jobs being created today actually require a four year degree.”

The program is expected to allow students to take classes specifically for the careers they want and direct students toward career technical programs, community or technical colleges, or apprenticeships. Representatives for the project are expected to visit St. Louis next week to take a deeper look into Missouri’s school and career programs.