“We have access to 45,000 future employees–do you?” That is definitely a statement which would turn the head of any human resource personnel or CEO, but it is true in the NEW North Region of Wisconsin. In April 2016, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) procured and contracted with Career Cruising to provide Wisconsin’s school districts with an optional choice for an electronic Academic and Career Planning (ACP) platform. Then, on August 15, 2017, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) expanded the use of the Career Cruising platform to include the web-based business-education partnership portal, Inspire.
The Inspire platform helps students achieve their future career goals by bridging the gap between school and the work world. Inspire provides a central hub in which area students and educators can actively interact with area employers and career coaches with the goals of:
- Helping students find relevance in what they are learning in the classroom
- Engaging students early in thinking about their careers
- Making a positive impact on our region’s career readiness
Here in the NEW North Region, we are fortunate to already have three Inspire deployments up and running in various stages–Inspire Sheboygan, now in its fourth year of operation; Inspire Door County, which is in Year Two; and Inspire Northeast Wisconsin, which has just started operating in the six counties which make up the CESA 8 educational region of the state. These three operating deployments have the potential to reach 45,000 students in just these three areas, with plans to expand the program throughout the NEW North Region as other school districts and counties express an interest in joining the Inspire NEW North integrated platform.
Employers are absolutely vital to developing a robust talent pipeline in this region through participation in and development of work-based learning programs, career mentorship, and partnerships with schools. Inspire provides a venue and a framework for employer relationships with secondary and post-secondary educational institutions across the region.
We’re very excited at the opportunity to make more immediate connections between students and businesses in the NEW North Region. As all nine regions of the WEDC deploy and connect through Inspire, Wisconsin is providing a robust and vital means to connect employers and students to greater opportunities and connections that support the vitality of our state!