School counselors play a pivotal role in building a stronger workforce, which is why MBEP and K14 Pathways Regional Joint Venture (part of the Strong Workforce Program) hosted an Industry-Education Counselor Summit for community college, high school, and adult school counselors last week at Twin Lakes Church in Aptos.

One of the goals of the K14 Pathways Regional Joint Venture is outreach and promotion of community college career pathways.  Counselors are key players in providing college AND career options to students to increase their knowledge of career pathways.  This summit was a day to honor the critical work of counselors and provide them with tools and resources to best support students in post secondary options.  This was the second year we brought together counselors from the Southwest Bay region, and the first year partnering with MBEP.  This partnership facilitated a wonderful day of industry and education for all who attended.

Sharon Turner, EdD, MPH

Regional Technical Assistance Provider (TAP), K-14 Pathways

The May 15 conference featured conversation about industry sector career pathways and training programs, with keynote talks by Guided Pathways Regional Coordinator Dr. Laurie Scolari and San Francisco Bay Center of Excellence Director John Carrese.  

Representatives from Tanimura & Antle, L. Kershner Design, Dientes Community Dental, Seaside Company, Santa Cruz Warriors, Monterey Bay Community Power, Looker, and Launch Brigade shared their perspective on workforce needs during an industry panel moderated by MBEP President, Kate Roberts. Panelists also shared that when hiring a new team member, they look for emotional intelligence, empathy for the customer and a passion and dedication for the job.

Hayley Mears, MBEP’s workforce development program manager, says of the event, ‘This is the first time we’ve co-hosted an event like this with the K14 Pathways Regional Joint Venture. We wanted to bring counselors together and enable them to hear directly from local employers in the region on how they can help students prepare for the workforce.  In addition, the labor market information shared during the event will assist counselors with helping students find career pathways with livable wages in the southwest bay region.’
Participants also had a chance to hear student success stories, learn about labor market tools and resources for counselors, learn about the importance of internships (see video below) and take part in networking sessions, including one designed to teach students how to tell their story.  Click here to view the presentation slides. 
Student panelists at the Industry-Education Counselor Summit shared their experience with CTE programs at Cabrillo College, Foothill College, Gavilan College and California State University, Monterey Bay and how those programs have launched their careers in industries they love. 

Josh Clawson and Kristen Alexander of ox.work talked about the common myths and fallacies in networking and teach the audience at our Industry-Education Counselor Summit about how to tell your own story and the importance of being a good listener.