2nd base: Internships & Digital Badges

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 CAREER READY INTERNSHIPS

Juniors and Seniors enrolled in the Washington Unified School District can access paid internships that are aligned with the school district’s Integrated college and career pathways programs, which are sequences of courses that expose students to concepts and skills they will need to pursue a job in one of ten industry areas. Internships offer real world training for students, exposing them to career options, and preparing them for entry level jobs in high wage, high demand, and high growth careers. Paid internships are correlated with an improved chance of obtaining full-time employment and higher pay.

West Sacramento Home Run is already teamed up with local employers such as the City of West Sacramento, Wallace Kuhl and Associates, the Center for Land Based Learning, and the California Fuel Cell partnership to provide high schoolers with internship opportunities.

Career Ready Internships

DIGITAL BADGING OPPORTUNITIES

Digital badges provide on-line verification of a student’s qualifications, skill set, technical ability, or proficiency. They allow students to be recognized for skills that are often not measured in traditional ways, while providing a dynamic tool for employers to verify candidate qualifications. This helps demonstrate the talent and capabilities of our local youth, and makes them more employable. Businesses have the opportunity to strengthen the local workforce by working with West Sacramento to create and design badges that align with the skill sets they need in their employees. Badges are available for skills such as design thinking, financial literacy, time management, arduino programing and more.

Learning and skill acquisition for youth today happens not only in the classroom, but also on-line, through volunteerism and workplace experiences, and even via peer-to-peer interactions.

Digital badging seeks to fully capture each youth’s skills development by creating visual proof of each valuable out-of-classroom learning experience. Each digital badge is a visual way to show possession of industry sector skills, career readiness, and success in internships, all attributes that grades alone often insufficiently communicate. The end result is employers making better hires and youth having greater opportunities to successfully enter the workplace.

Digital badges are like Girl Scout or Boy Scout merit badges. To earn them, a youth must show he or she has successfully completed a program of skill development. However, digital badges are superior to an old-school badging system because they are displayable on-line and can be posted to social media platforms, career-oriented networking services, such as LinkedIn, or added to resumes and college applications. In addition, each click on a digital badge can reveal greater insight into the learning experience, including the tasks the youth had to perform and proof of successful completion in the form of videos of projects undertaken, written work product, and testimonials from supervisors, to name a few.

Digital Badges

In West Sacramento, digital badges serve as motivators and skill building ladders, with each acquired badge offering an opportunity to move to more valuable opportunities. Learn more about the digital badging work in West Sacramento through the LRNG digital badging platform by going here.