Why should industry be involved in CTE?

Students Launch into Careers Early

Exploring careers through real-world experiences before graduating high school, helps students save time and money, develop industry-specific technical skills, and practice employability skills such as communication, collaboration, and resilience. Work-Based Learning experiences help students connect to a local network of professionals and can be a gateway to postsecondary education and early career opportunities. Learn more about Early Career Outcomes for students in Washington, DC here.

Industries Influence Leading-Edge Education

Industry partners give our students context to careers outside of the textbook. Professionals and organizations who participate in Work-Based Learning in Washington, DC can become co-creators of the Career & Technical Education (CTE) students receive in high school by providing hands-on career experiences for students, ensuring schools are teaching up-to-date industry skills and competencies, and growing excitement within your future workforce.

Preparing Tomorrow’s Workforce Benefits Our Community

When industry and schools partner to provide meaningful career preparation experiences to students, learners are more likely to stay in DC or return to the metro-area after postsecondary education for their careers. Creating pathways for more highly-skilled workers to live and work in the District, directly benefits our industry partners, our economy, and our community.

Ways to Get Involved

Professionals and organizations who participate in DC CTE Work-Based Learning are able to develop relationships with a pool of new, diverse, local talent. Explore the many ways professionals and organizations can get involved below.

Offer a Work-Based Learning Opportunity

Work-Based Learning (WBL) in DC is where industry and academics intersect. WBL opportunities are offered in all DC Career & Technical Education courses, which build upon one another as students move through their chosen Program of Study pathway. The different types of opportunities are listed in italics below. You or your organization can provide opportunities for student learning by applying as volunteers.

Join an Industry Board

Industry Advisory Board

There are 8 Industry Advisory Boards (IAB), each aligned to a different local industry. IAB members bring industry-specific knowledge to DC CTE to ensure the most relevant and effective practices in Work-Based Learning are implemented for CTE students and to help expose CTE teachers to industry practices and needs. Board members are also asked to advise on industry-specific course standards and support periodic CTE program monitoring. You can review the full IAB member role description here.

Executive Advisory Board

The Executive Advisory Board (EAB) leads and advises the District of Columbia Career Academy Network (DC CAN) and the DC Career and Technical Education (CTE) Network in promoting Work-Based Learning opportunities for CTE students and ensuring the Industry Advisory Board’s (IAB) adherence to the CTE Network’s mission, vision, and strategic plan. EAB membership consists of IAB co-chairs and representatives from participating school districts, institutions of higher education, District government, and non-profit organizations. Learn more about the EAB members role here. Contact Simone Garcia, simone.garcia@dc.gov, with any questions about the EAB.

To learn more about how DC defines Work-Based Learning and how we think about quality, check out CityWork’s glossary of key WBL terms found here and their High Quality WBL Rubric found here.