By John Witzel
The writer is president of the Nebraska State Board of Education
Teen employment is now at the lowest level since the Great Depression. Lack of meaningful workplace experiences after completing postsecondary education has proved to have a negative impact on workplace success and directly affects the economy of Nebraska.
Rich Katt, director of career education for the Nebraska Department of Education, has stated that many successful school/business partnerships, such as work-based learning, have dramatically addressed the challenge of preparing students for the workforce and have tackled the shortfall in a skilled and technically trained workforce.
Work-based learning provides multiple opportunities for students to interact directly with various businesses and companies as they apply their academic and technical skills toward “real world” career aspirations and goals. In addition, according to Gallup, business leaders value an internship or on-the-job training more than the college major or grades of employees.