PeerForward Teams Ignite Campaigns to Increase Career Awareness

Students who make a connection between going to college and achieving career goals are six times more likely to earn a bachelor’s degree, according to research by the Bridgespan Group. That’s why our Peer Leaders are going the extra mile to make sure their peers know the wealth of career options available to them and how a college degree can help get them there.

Take the PeerForward team from Charles H. Flowers High School in Prince George’s County, Md. On Jan 30, they held a College and Career Readiness Workshop for parents and students from 8th-12th grade. The night included sessions on College and Career Readiness Assessments, Career Technical Education Programs, Specialty Programs, and Financial Aid.  

Knowing high school can be a key time to lay the foundation for future college and career success, the Flowers HS Peer Leaders also hosted a panel titled “Positive Peer Influence: Navigating High School for 8th and 9th-Graders,” where Peer Leaders answered questions from the audience about personal, social, and academic aspects of high school life. They coordinated an activity where students broke into small groups to discuss real-life scenarios they might go through in high school and how they would resolve those issues. Peer Leaders advised students to take school seriously, make good attendance a high priority, set personal goals, and pursue internships. They cautioned students against skipping class, cheating, or worrying too much about popularity. Through this, students learned how maximizing their current high school experience can bring them closer to reaching their future goals. 

PeerForward Coach, Cornelius Williams, shared the following about the discussion: “Both students and parents were intrigued with the transparency of the Peer Leaders. It resonated with them and parents were happy that students were able to hear from a peer, someone currently in high school. The Peer Leaders were able to share their story and stand in their truth; even though some of them went through challenges, they were able to speak openly about how they overcame them.”

On Feb 1, Chesapeake Math and IT (CMIT) Academy in PG County, Md. hosted their own Career Day, where professionals from fields like Communications, Business, Visual Arts, Cybersecurity, Engineering, Law, Architecture, Government, and Education were invited to speak and lead workshops.  

PeerForward Coach D.C. Howard, Community Engagement Specialist Aloysia Jean, and Communications Coordinator Victoria Navarro, hosted their own workshop that day titled “Networking and Building Your Brand” for CMIT students. Students learned practical skills for networking, crafting their 60-second elevator pitch, and using social media to present themselves professionally. 

CMIT Peer Leaders moderated panels where professionals shared information about their current job, how they arrived at that position, and any advice for high school students. During the Q&A section, students were able to ask about tangible steps they could be taking current high school students to achieve the same careers in the future.

We’re so proud of the work our Peer Leaders are doing to build career awareness for their peers!

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