Creating a Skilled Workforce in NE Iowa

April 2010

Employers are demanding that employees demonstrate the skills to work productively in teams, communicate effectively, think innovatively and solve problems creatively, yet an overwhelming number of students leave their educational experience unprepared for the world of work. Teachers are now expected to teach employability skills as part of the 21st Century Skills and the Iowa Core Curriculum.

Erin Ludwig, ISU Extension Family Resource Management Specialist, shared curriculum and strategies for teaching these employability skills as part of a series of workshops offered in Elkader by Northeast Iowa Community College and Keystone Area Education Agency Region 1.

 

The training touched on each career path and technical area, from agriculture and business, to industrial technology and family & consumer science. Eighty-five educators, representing Allamakee, Chickasaw, Clayton, Howard, Delaware, Fayette, Dubuque, and Winneshiek counties, took part in the training.

 

“We wanted to affirm career and technical teachers with what they are currently doing and offer additional strategies in helping them teach soft skills. The workshop and the Workplace Essentials curriculum helped them us do this,” said Cherie Casey, School Improvement Facilitator for Keystone Area Education Agency.

The most effective part of the workshop was having the teachers teach portions of the curriculum; this gave them an opportunity to see how it could be incorporated into their classrooms.

- Cherie Casey , School Improvement Facilitator for Keystone Area Education Agency

The Workplace Essentials curriculum was developed by Iowa Workforce Development, Iowa Department of Human Services and Iowa State University Extension.

For more information about this program contact:
Erin Ludwig, ISU Extension Family Resource Management Specialist, 563-380-1475,eludwig@iastate.edu