Today wasn’t a typical school day for about 150 9th graders in the college-and-career exploration classes at Madison High School in Northeast Portland. Instead, students got a look at the world of work.
One group went to Nike’s global headquarters in Washington County. Another group visited PCC Swan Island Trades Center. A third went to Vestas and Urban Airship, which share a building in the Pearl District.
Four very different organizations. One unifying message: Keep learning and trying new things. Be adaptable. Work hard. Watch for opportunities.
Madison High School, like many campuses in Portland Public Schools, is stepping up its focus on career readiness. Madison asked the Portland Workforce Alliance to help find employers to host career visits such as these.
All four employers said yes to PWA. By doing so, they said yes to helping about 150 young people develop informed, inspired career aspirations.
“I hope we can work together again,” one Madison teacher wrote to Nike’s JR Gustafson, a PWA past board president who recruited Nike volunteers to work with students. “I think it was very valuable, and the consistent message of ‘hard work pays off’ is so important for these young people. This is an experience they won’t soon forget. ”
Thank you to about 50 volunteers who made these morning’s visits possible. And thank you to Madison career coordinator Erica Spencer and her educator colleagues for preparing students for the experience!