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Today's educators need to be willing to learn from the past as well as embrace the future and their students' needs. The internet gives access to insights of thousands of professionals who make their work available online. Sometimes, just a few minutes of inspiration is all that is needed to reignite your passion for teaching.
This evening marks the kickoff of the 2016 Close It Summit in Dallas, TX hosted by nonprofit Innovate+Educate, a national leader in developing strategies and implementing solutions to address the skills gap! The title of this year's conference is SHIFT Happens: No Turning Back in reference to the ever-evolving education, training, and hiring space. In particular, the 2016 summit is to be focused on the shift toward competencies and the innovative new changes happening in competency-based education.
Young people need career guidance, but too often, they struggle to find it. A CareerBuilder study found that twenty-four percent of high school seniors say they have no idea what they want to do for a career.1 Further, a YouthTruth survey discovered that only 45 percent of high school students feel positive about their college and career readiness.2 Without adequate preparation, many young people will take whatever job is available after graduation just to make ends meet, unaware they have other options. Here are four steps high school counselors can take to point their students in the right direction.
Last week I had the pleasure of attending and presenting at the 2016 NJCA Leadership Summit in Arlington, Virginia.  This annual conference brings together the Job Corps community comprised of workforce development experts, education practitioners, corporate partners, U.S. Department of Labor officials, Office of Job Corps leadership and staff, as well as members of Congress to discuss and develop strategies for enhancing Job Corps services.­
Next week the Penn Foster team will hit the road to participate in two of our favorite regional career college conferences: the California Association of Private Postsecondary Schools 32nd Annual Conference in Pasadena, CA from October 5th - 7th, and the Career Colleges and Schools of Texas 2016 Annual Conference in Austin, TX from October 10th - 12th. We're excited as always for the chance to connect with leaders in the private postsecondary education space as we explore opportunities for growth and innovation in the industry.
Your neighborhood Goodwill may offer more than meets the eye. Many Goodwill centers across the nation operate One Stop Career Centers alongside their retail stores/donation centers to assist youth, adults, and families to improve their skills and education. One such Career Center in Conemaugh Valley, Pennsylvania, is now offering locals the chance to earn their high school diploma in a supportive environment. This gives community members who are struggling to find work a second chance to earn the credentials and skills needed to increase their chances for employment.
"Teamwork makes the dream work." This past Thursday, this phrase echoed through the Mayor's Reception Room at Philadelphia's City Hall, where five participants of The Choice is Yours (TCY) program gathered to celebrate their high school graduation. Alberta Lloyd, Career Instructor for TCY at JEVS Human Services (JEVS), stood at the front of the room to present the five individuals, who were about to be presented with their Penn Foster High School diplomas. "This is more than a program " this is an opportunity," she noted.
A student exhibiting signs of chronic absenteeism misses 10 percent or more of the school year.1 They may miss a consecutive period or spread their absences throughout the year. This behavior has many root causes, such as major illness, fear of bullying and a lack of value placed on education. Most schools focus on average daily attendance, but this figure doesn't reveal the major problem of chronic absenteeism, which impacts 6.5 million students each year.2
Today's students may be more stressed than ever before. In fact, the 2015 American College Health Association National College Health Assessment found that 85.6 percent of students had felt overwhelmed in the past year.1 The pressures of getting top grades, balancing extracurricular activities with studying, and spending time with family all add up. In addition, students manage another identity in the digital world. Social media platforms are one more thing to keep up with and are often rife with stress-inducing comparisons, gossip and bullying.
This Thursday, the Penn Foster team will head down to Philadelphia for an exciting double-event in partnership with JEVS Human Services (JEVS), a non-profit, multi-service organization with over 20 programs providing skills development, job readiness and career services, to name a few. The day will bring together thought leaders from the local community and beyond to discuss workforce development trends and education solutions, and celebrate recent graduates of Penn Foster High School. So what is on tap for the day?

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