October 2022 Newsletter

October 2022 Newsletter

The winter and spring 2023 internship application portal is NOW OPEN! This opportunity to gain experience, make connections, and get ahead of the curve is open to all students in grades 11 – 12. Internships are 45 to 90 hours in length and students may be able to earn high school credit.

Fall I 2022 Job Shadow Portal Closes with Big Numbers!

Sept. 23 marked the close of our school year 2022 – ’23 fall I job shadow application portal. We had nearly 2,500 students from 47 different high schools sign up for job shadows. This represents a 35 percent increase in fall job shadow requests over last year!

Graphic: 2500 students signed up for job shadows! That's a 35 percent increase over last year.

Students were able to choose from over 95 different career exploration days and over 100 specific careers. The most popular shadow request areas were in real estate, healthcare, education, veterinary medicine, and physical therapy. Other popular requests were skilled trades, construction, cosmetology, and engineering.

We are also excited to announce that this year we will be piloting a second fall job shadow application window from Nov. 7 – Nov. 18 at 3 p.m. The goal of this shorter opportunity is to allow students who may have missed the first fall application period to have one more chance to apply before January. This was a request we heard from our school stakeholders and one we have worked hard to implement.

Are you a business interested in hosting a job shadow and bringing students into your work environment? If so, check out our Partners and Volunteers page to learn more about how you can get involved!

From Mini Police Academy Day to Joining the Force

Where are they now?

Photo of Samuel Contreras, former WLC mini police academy day attendee, standing next to his police vehicle.Samuel Contreras, a former City High School student, attended the WLC Mini Police Academy Day hosted by the Coralville Police Department in November 2018. The experience solidified his desire to become a police officer and helped him understand what he needed to do to make that dream come true.

Fast forward four years and Sam is now an officer with the Coralville PD, the same police department where he originally had his shadow. Kyle Nicholson, one of the hosts of the shadow in 2018, is now one of Sam’s mentors. Talk about coming full circle!

“I left the mini police academy event with my mind made up; I wanted to be a police officer,” said Sam. “Learning about all the different jobs, tasks, and special assignments a police officer can do, all with the same goal of helping and serving people as well as protecting the community, I knew that was something I wanted to be a part of. The mini police academy really helped me understand what I was getting into. I am honored to have been able to have that experience, as it has helped me get to where I am today!”

Internships and Tours Help Students Explore Careers in Manufacturing

In honor of Advanced Manufacturing Month, we want to share the success story of a student who recently completed a WLC internship with one of our local manufacturing partners. Takeshi Fottral, from Prairie High School, interned with MSI Mold Builders as a mechanical/design engineering intern over the summer. Takeshi got the chance to learn about the company, the industry, and careers in the field.

“I liked the variety of things that I did at MSI Mold Builders,” Takeshi says. “I got involved on the shop floor and in project management. There are so many things to do from start to finish. I really liked how the internship was set up to show that range of work to high school interns.”

Photo of Will Vlasek, who completed a WLC internship with MSI Mold BuildersTakeshi also got the chance to work alongside two fellow Prairie High School students and former WLC interns (one current classmate and one Prairie High School alum). Will Vlasek, who completed a WLC internship with MSI Mold Builders last spring, continued working for MSI over the summer, even after his internship ended. Jake Smith did a WLC internship with MSI in the summer of 2014 and is employed there now. He helped host both Will and Takashi.

MSI Mold Builders has been a great WLC partner through the years. Beyond hosting interns, they also host a job shadow day called Engineering and Machining Careers in Advanced Manufacturing. They participate in career speaker events and career fairs, and this month they were a tour location as part of our Career Discovery Tours. The Career Discovery Tours are designed to expand knowledge about manufacturing, engineering, and industrial technology careers. During these three days of tours, companies in our area open their businesses to help students understand what’s created in Eastern Iowa. Students learn about applied science careers, training, resources, and the education required to gain employment in the industry. MSI opened their doors for all three days of the event, hosting over 50 students!

Volunteers Needed for Workplace Learning Connection Mock Interviews!

Workplace Learning Connection offers a wide array of opportunities for area students, including the opportunity to participate in mock interviews. As part of this offering, students are able to complete a 15-minute interview with a local professional to get a feel for what an interview is like, the kind of questions asked, and how to behave. For most students this ends up being their first interview experience!

Interested in becoming a mock interview volunteer? We are looking for volunteers across all seven of our counties! If you are interested, please fill out this interest form and we will be in touch.

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