Parents Underestimate Potential of These STEM Careers

by Denise Felder~

Employers and educators know that young people with interests and skills in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) are likely to qualify for a wide range of high-paying careers.

For example, a Mechanical Drafter in Minnesota could earn $18 an hour to start. The median wage for Drafters with an Associate’s degree is almost $27 an hour.

Potential students and job seekers, however, often don’t know about the innovative work and high earning potential that manufacturing careers offer. And parents of potential students — who influence what their children study in college — have misconceptions about what it’s really like to work in manufacturing.

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8 Ways Presenting at Conferences Helps Your Career

By Denise Felder~


Have you ever looked at a speaker in a business meeting or professional conference and thought, “I could do that”?

Or do you think the opposite? – “There’s no way I could stand in front of the room like that.”

Either way, you are probably more qualified than you think to lead a presentation at work.

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3 Things Teens Can Do To Find a Summer Job

By Denise Felder ~

Job market experts say that teens are having an easier time finding summer jobs this year than in recent years.

This is great news!

A summer job is an excellent way to earn money while gaining skills and experience that will help you in your education and career plans.

Here are three tips teens and young adults can use when choosing the right job. Continue reading

Which High-Paying Jobs Don’t Require a Degree?

by Denise Felder ~

Maybe you’ve heard – The job market has changed.

Most good paying jobs now require a college degree or some other type of postsecondary credential, like an apprenticeship. That means that there are fewer jobs available to someone with only a high school diploma today than there were 20 or 30 years ago. Continue reading

Think You Know Career Tech? Think Again

by Denise Felder ~

When I started working for the state’s Career Technical Education (CTE) leadership a few months ago, I thought I knew what CTE was, but I had no idea.

Like many people, I thought CTE classes were for high school students to learn a manual trade instead of preparing for college. Well, like many people, I thought wrong.

I didn’t know what I didn’t know about CTE.

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Better Data on High-School-to-College-Transitions with SLEDS

by Rachel Vilsak ~

How many students at public Minnesota high schools are prepared for postsecondary education? Do these students attend college? If so, do they complete a certificate or degree?

Data to answer questions such as these will play a key role in informing Minnesotans about how students are doing, and direct efforts to open up higher education opportunities for everyone.

The good news is, Minnesota has developed a data system to answer these questions. Continue reading

New Tool Helps Grads Find Employment Outcomes

by Luke Greiner ~

If you’re like most students, you eagerly anticipate graduation.

The Minnesota Office of Higher Education (MOHE) estimated that roughly 450,000 Minnesotans are currently enrolled in college and looking forward to their graduation day. However, after the party hats are set aside, and there are no more finals to cram for, the challenge of finding a job will consume as much or more of your time as studying once did.

Thanks to a new tool provided by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), you are now able to find out where graduates got jobs for every major educational program offered in Minnesota. This is a way for you to see how your degree or credentials match employer demand. Continue reading

Finding Success and Honor in a New Career

by Lora Foremen-Krall ~

Middle-age has a way of sneaking up on you.

All of the sudden you realize your hair is a bit grayer, your waistline a bit bigger, and the career you thought you wanted is not going in the direction you had hoped.  Some try to recapture their youth with new cars, clothes and makeovers. Others go on a trip hoping to find inspiration and adventure, while others simply accept an unfulfilling career. None of those was an option for me!

Gray hair signified the wisdom life has given me. My waistline: a sedentary job. And as for my career — you’re never too old to try something new!

I wanted to do some form of public service, but stay close to home. I found an opportunity with Minnesota Reading Corps to serve children who needed support to succeed in school. Continue reading