At its May meeting, the Career Ready PA Coalition showcased our collaborations with Covestro as examples of “Community Partnerships in Action.”
Consortium Program Director Sarah Brooks and Covestro STEM Education Lead Ben Renwick presented an overview of the work and the impetus behind it. The meeting also featured presenters on “Employability Skills and Industry Credentials”, with an emphasis on micro-credentials and employability.
Covestro is among a number of corporate partners that have participated in our Student Powered Solutions program to create Project-Based Learning opportunities by offering real-world challenges in classrooms.
Through the projects, middle and high school students have taken on assignments from Covestro that ranged from thinking through The Future of Mobility and how autonomous vehicles might be equipped and used, to finding ways of applying the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals in their schools or communities.
“One of the goals is for students to learn employability skills like communication and problem- solving, and to understand how essential those skills are as they work with their teams,” Brooks told attendees.
Working with companies also gives students opportunities to learn about jobs and career paths they know little if anything about, Brooks added.
From Covestro’s standpoint a key benefit of partnering with schools is building “a pipeline of students” interested in the STEM career pathways and supporting them in developing workplace skills, Renwick said.
Offering insights about micro-credentialling and employability during the Coalition meeting were Dr. Patience Lehrman, Vice Dean of Workforce and Community Development, College of Education and Human Development, Temple University and Heidi Speese, Customer Care and Outreach Manager for NOCTI.
The Coalition formed in 2019 to encourage cross-sector partnerships that help students access career information and pathways.