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Career Pathways

The four years of high school from ninth grade to twelfth grade can be an exciting and rewarding time for students. A very important component in preparing for the future involves Career Planning. Preparing for future educational and career opportunities involves a great deal, and students who are prepared to make these decisions are often times more successful than those students who lack a sense of direction.

There are many factors that determine success in high school. It is important for students to have a focus so they can make the most of the opportunities that lie before them. Parents, counselors, and teachers all play key roles in guiding students through the many challenges that they encounter. It is important to plan early, often, and establish goals.

Career Pathway Planning

Teacher using smart board in classroom

Career Pathways are clusters of related occupations that require different levels of education and training. People working in a career path share similar interests, abilities, and talents. Career paths help students identify a career focus without being locked into a specific occupation. By exploring career paths, students expand future choices. They develop an understanding that all paths are important - all of them are needed to keep a community going.

Participation in a well-organized, well-planned career development component, which includes the concepts of Career Pathways, directly affects both readiness for employment and actual employability success; students' performance in school improves, involvement in school and community activities expands, decision-making skills strengthen, career preparation advances, and flexibility for meeting change increases.

In addition, students who continue formal education beyond high school have a clear direction and a better understanding as to why they are pursuing post-secondary education and training options. There is an understanding that learning is lifelong.

The State of Michigan has developed a six-career pathway program. Every occupation in the world of work would fall within one of the six pathways identified.

The State of Michigan Career Pathways Models

Choose a career pathway below to discover which pathway best matches your interests.

Arts, Communications & Media

Business, Management, Marketing & Technology

Engineering/Manufacturing & Industrial Technology

Health Sciences

Human Services

Natural Resources & Agri-Science