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Career & Education Day was ahead of its time

2014 February 6
by HISD Communications

When the Houston Hispanic Forum created the first Career and Education Day (CED) 28 years ago, its focus was on keeping minority students in school by offering them an inspiring glimpse into the world of professions and higher learning.

Although the audience and purpose have long since broadened, perhaps at no time in its more than quarter-century of existence has the CED been more relevant to young people, their families, and to Houston’s continued economic strength in energy, health, technology, and the arts.

In its last session, the Texas Legislature mandated that school districts require high school students to create Personal Graduation Plans that establish their educational and career pathways.

Even before that, HISD was steadily increasing its emphasis on combining college readiness with career awareness. Next year, thanks to a $30 million award in the federal “Race to the Top,” we will embark on an ambitious and innovative “Linked Learning” model that will transform the way we teach from kindergarten through high school. While meeting the growing academic rigor required to succeed in our global economy, students will learn about career possibilities from the youngest age. At each level, they will broaden their explorations of professions, and in high school will choose a personalized path with dazzling opportunities for focused study that will transport them into college and career.

The Career and Education Day is a one-stop location for families to expose their children of all ages to dozens of colleges and universities, as well as local businesses and corporations – complete with willing educators, students, and professionals who are anxious to share their excitement about higher education and careers. The event runs from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday at the George R. Brown Convention Center.

HISD’s College and Career Readiness Department – and our remarkable EMERGE program for low-income, high-achieving high school students – will also be on hand to provide information about college, testing, interviewing, and financial aid. You may walk away with all kinds of ideas about where you can get a quarter-million-dollar education at no cost, with a college who wants you and is prepared to offer you the support needed to earn your degree.

The event is free, so the investment involves only time. The chance to set youngsters’ dreams for the future in motion – as they say in the commercial – is priceless.

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