CareerWise is an initiative created by leading Colorado industry associations. These industry leaders understand that schools are not experts in addressing the needs of businesses. By partnering with these organizations and focusing on experiential learning, we believe we can meet these needs and provide added benefit to all students.
The Business Case
Hosting apprenticeships and becoming a CCOL isn't about charity, it's about investing in your future. Companies regularly identify the problem of recruiting skilled job candidates as a major challenge, but Colorado's youth still stands massively underemployed. This is a threat to our state's long-term growth. Programs similar to CareerWise apprenticeships result in less turnover and fewer wasted training dollars.
70 percent of Colorado adults are not from the Centennial State. They are highly educated transplants that have come to fill a desperate need for talent among Colorado companies. At the same time, local youth faces high unemployment rates. Countries with similar programs to CareerWise have the lowest youth unemployment rates in the world. With the help of educators and businesses, we can solve Colorado's workforce issues.
Multiple Paths to Success
The same pathway through high school and beyond will not work for every student. College may not be the best solution for every student, but an apprenticeship can be. All students can benefit from learning workplace skills as they gain a practical education. An apprenticeship does not close doors - it opens them. When a student successfully completes a CareerWise apprenticeship, they'll have a variety of options, including continuing to a 4-year school, entering the workforce, or seeking specialized training.
Businesses Become Centers of Learning
Innovation is at home in Colorado. Our state is growing rapidly and is poised to have a great impact on the nation's economic future. CareerWise is aligning with businesses in the IT, finance, business operations, and advanced manufacturing sectors in order to provide students with robust apprenticeships. Partnering businesses will help students connect theory with practice.
The Future of Colorado Apprenticeships
The pilot program for CareerWise is set to launch in 2017. We are already working dilligently with businesses, industry associations, school districts, and policymakers to integrate experiential-based learning into several Denver-area school's curriculums.