The purpose of work-based learning is to provide students with internal and external opportunities to expand their knowledge and to understand the correlation between academic lessons and real world applicability. The students connect their lessons with the real world by going on job shadow field trips to technology companies in the Bay Area. Also, by having speaker presentations.
The purpose of internships is to offer real world employment opportunities in order to increase student skill set and build relationships with external partners. Internships are a great help to the students because it shows them the importance of time management, how to connect with professionals, along with dress codes.
The purpose of study trips is to allow students to experience the work environments of major tech organizations and shadow daily tasks and challenges of employees. The students attend workshops consisting of resume writing, interview protocols, hearing from employees about their journey to their jobs. By attending job shadow field trips, the students can see first hand how a business is run. They can see that even a CEO might have come from a low-income family and what is expected of them when they do work. Some previous job shadow trips are Comcast, Microsoft, EA Games, AT&T, and Mentor Graphics.
The purpose of the speaker series is to facilitate open discussions between students and professionals in the tech industry in order to spark curiosity and further learning. At Kennedy High School and De Anza High School, the students prepare ahead of time by looking up the company the speaker works for. The speakers present for a half hour covering their journey and working at the company followed by questions/answers. Usually, a contest will take place to see how much the students paid attention. At El Cerrito High School, each presentation consists of a brief intro from the speaker (15 minutes) but should be entirely driven by the students through Q & A. Students should be prepared ahead of time.
“Being employed by Techfutures has allowed me to see both sides of the picture. The Techfutures network is constantly evolving and being improved every year. Knowing that I contribute to Techfutures as well as the hundreds of kids who take part in it is a very good feeling. ITA is something to definitely take advantage of. The teachers and staff are amazing and will do whatever it takes to see you succeed.” -Justin Gosiengfiao