My mission as a business teacher has always been, and will always be, to get my students hired. I envision my students interviewing for the job of their dreams or landing that prized promotion with ease due to their preparation. I also emphasize to my students that this goal setting process includes being accepted to that dream college or university.
As I watched the Oklahoma University football game against Ohio last weekend, I could not help but remind my students that where you attend college will certainly have an impact on your future as will the career and industry choices for employment. Even though OU did not win the game, it was a stark reminder that it’s not about winning, it’s about how you play the game. Who do you connect with? What institutions do you respect and connect with? And what companies do you admire and want to keep in your professional loop?
One way I have been teaching my students to leverage contacts is through developing a Linkedin Profile. College and career alike flock to this amazing network of professionals to find the best of the best in their field. After creating a profile, students are given the task to link with me, and then see that they are linked with professionals including Microsoft in Education and other companies third party. This is the power of networking brought to life. I teach my students how to develop a powerful profile and that this is their first professional digital footprint to the world. Students embrace the opportunity and continue to work to make their career dreams a reality.
I believe strongly in providing my students not just with the mock interview (imperative to the process of being hired), but also to the art of leveraging contacts to negotiate a future that matches their dreams. I teach this process in my Career and Financial Business class but I also encourage my students in my clubs and other classes to jump on the networking bandwagon.
Another great way to connect students to prized institutions and employers is via Skype in the classroom. I have scheduled a virtual tour with RIT (Rochester Institute of Technology) for October. My students are excited and certainly see the enthusiasm I have for this innovative campus I had the privilege to visit last Spring. RIT was courageous enough to embark on a Skype tour for the first time with me and I am honored. My students will gain great insight as they virtually tour the Saunder’s College of Business.
This is how I help students be ready to be hired in the 21st century business world. This is how I model my ability to network and stay connected in a 21st century workforce as a teacher. This is one way I implement 21st century learning design.