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Mission & Vision


Empower students enrolled in Mercer County ESC service school districts to recognize and understand employment and education opportunities by developing meaningful, individualized connections between students, high school staff, and local employers. 


In developing and facilitating programs to encourage the appropriate exploration and skills at the high school level, we aim to expand the workforce skill-set to meet the needs of area businesses.


About Our Career Navigator Service


Making the right career decision is one of the most important, yet most overwhelming decisions in life.  A recent Harris Poll, commissioned by the National Career Development Association (NCDA), of recent graduates and working adults found that 85% agree that career service professionals provide valuable assistance and the majority of people need services from a career services professional.


The Career Navigator program strives to support students and their school districts with career connection efforts by providing these services.  The Career Navigator Program provides the following: 


  1. Individualized Student Engagement and Exploration

The Career Navigator provides individual, one-on-one Career Coaching for students identified by their school staff as needing additional guidance in this area. Coaching includes one-on-one meetings, aptitude/interest assessments, job shadowing with local companies, and assistance with resume writing and employability skills.


  1. District-wide Engagement and Exploration

Classroom presentations and activities are available for any grade level and can be tailored to suit the specific needs of each individual district.  The Career Navigator also serves as the primary contact for sharing information about events, resources, and activities to students, parents, schools, and community organizations.  In addition, professional development opportunities are available for career-content teachers and school counselors.


  1. Business and Community Engagement

Working with community partners, businesses, and industries, the Career Navigator will help connect local career opportunities to the students and schools by coordinating job shadowing, business tours, and other activities.


COURSEWORK AND CERTIFICATION


The Career Navigator at the Mercer County ESC has completed the National Career Development Association’s courses for certification in Facilitating Career Development (FCD) and for a School Development Career Advisor (SCDA), with The Pritchard Group. The FCD 120-hour training program prepares individuals to be career practitioners in schools, businesses, universities, and private practice. The training is known globally as learners practice and master skills to serve their clients and gain cutting-edge knowledge about career development. Completers are eligible to apply for two industry-recognized credentials: CCE’s Global Career Development Facilitator or NCDA’s Certified Career Services Provider.

NCDA’s School Career Development Advisor 45-hour training program prepares individuals to be career practitioners in K-12 schools or in other settings working with youth. Completers are eligible to apply for this industry-recognized credential: NCDA’s Certified School Career Development Advisor.

NCDA SCDA and Mercer County ESC Professional Statement:
As the Career Navigator for the Mercer County Educational Service Center, I will do my best to empower students enrolled in our service districts to recognize and understand employment and education opportunities by developing meaningful, individualized connections between students, high school staff, and local employers.
  • I will place a high priority on working collaboratively and professionally with students, schools, and parents while respecting the dignity and confidentiality of the students engaging in the Career Navigator service.
  • I will place high importance on developing a trusting, professional, authentic relationship with each student I serve, promoting their welfare by using helping skills and a non-judgmental, open, honest, transparent, and non-discriminatory approach, meeting students where they are in their career development and guiding them without force, bias, or causing harm.
  • I will develop and facilitate programs within the scope of my skills and training, to encourage the appropriate exploration at the high school level, aiming to serve student needs and expand the workforce skill-set to meet the needs of area businesses.

CONTACT


Sandi Holdheide

Career Navigator

[email protected]




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