Thriving communities begin with each citizen’s ability to access and attain fulfilling, quality careers. At the same time, employers must have access to a willing and capable talent pool. Our region, Southwest Central Indiana, is blessed with a diverse array of industries with distinct specialization in the defense, life sciences, and advanced manufacturing sectors. However, a disconnect continues to exist between qualified workforce needed by employers and individuals’ ability to obtain meaningful employment within the region. To begin to bridge this gap, Regional Opportunity Initiatives, Inc., the Center for P-16 Research and Collaboration in the School of Education at Indiana University, and DirectEmployers Institute have partnered to create an Educator Boot Camp externship program. The program is modeled after one that takes place in Dubois County. These types of programs aim to foster positive relationships between school systems and relevant local industry, increase educator awareness of the types of careers available regionally, and enable schools to improve career awareness in their students.
Teachers, counselors, and school leaders are invited to participate in a comprehensive, meaningful externship program from June 2-9. This experience will expose participants to the wide variety of industry jobs available in Southwest Central Indiana (SWCI). Each extern will spend 2-4 days within the host companies learning about the skills and abilities needed at different employment levels within the organization. Industry partners across our major sectors have graciously agreed to host Boot Camp externs, including:
- Boston Scientific
- COOK Group (including Medical, Polymer, and Pharmica operations)
- Crane NSWC
- Jasper Engines – Crawford County
- Metal Technologies
- Technology Service Corporation (TSC)
All educators from ROI’s eleven county region and from public schools serving grades K-12 are invited to apply for this program. Fifty educators will be accepted and will be immersed in local, sector-relevant STEM-related industries learn about the quality jobs available and the skills needed to obtain positions in each of the highlighted companies. In addition to some professional development, participants will spend time working alongside industry employees at the various locations learning about safety, quality assurance, lean manufacturing, rules/regulations, creative problem solving, workforce needs and educational attainment necessary for employment.
Each participant shall receive:
- A $750 stipend, for your six days of participation ($125 per day)
- Some travel reimbursement depending on distances traveled
- A certificate of participation documenting the hours spent for Professional Growth Points
- Invaluable experience to be communicated back to your school, students, peers, and community members to increase awareness of local jobs and industry
- Instruction from top-level professionals at Indiana University and Ivy Tech, Bloomington
- Time to network with fellow teachers across the region as you learn about workforce opportunities
This program will run Friday, June 2, 2017, through Friday, June 9, 2017. Deadline to apply is Friday, April 14, 2017. Selected externs will be notified in early May.