Happy July from Golden Path Solutions! We hope you’re having a great summer so far. We may be enjoying a little extra sun, travel, and time at the lakes, but our thoughts are never far from career exploration and workforce development. We love finding ways to connect all of you.

We are working with several employers to create exciting new Career Profiles in Compass this month. Some of these employers include Packet Digital in Fargo, ND, a leading drone battery manufacturer and designer; Aldevron in Fargo, a manufacturer of DNA, mRNA, and proteins for research and vaccines; Anchor Mechanical in Cummings, ND, an industrial maintenance and support company for agricultural processing plants and structures; and Great Kids Therapy in Fargo, a pediatric outpatient therapy clinic (with owner Kelsey Hoffmann, pictured above). All of these opportunities and more will be available for users soon in Compass.

Here’s what else is new at Golden Path in July:

New strategy-based offering at Golden Path

One thing that we’ve discovered as we partner with employers for workforce development is that many want support in developing their strategy for connecting with students and schools. They want to know what programs they should be part of, what schools they should reach out to, and which teachers they should be visiting with.

We now offer a service that provides that support. The new Partnership Package focuses on pairing our industry experience with employers’ workforce development goals. We start with a strategy session to explore an employer’s unique needs, what hasn’t worked in the past, and what they’re willing to try now. Our team then develops a yearlong plan for school and student engagement, conducts regular check-ins throughout the year, and provides regular recommended connection opportunities. We also continue to support the employer with work-based learning (WBL) opportunities and Career Profiles in Compass. If an employer already has a developed strategy, but not the network to support it, we can help with that too. Contact us today to learn more.

Presenting at ACTE national conference

Golden Path Solutions Founder and CEO, Patrick Mineer, will present at the Association for Career and Technical Education’s (ACTE) CareerTech VISION 2024 conference Dec. 4-7 in San Antonio, TX, along with North Dakota Career & Technical Education and XAP. We are looking forward to highlighting our work with WBL programming, workforce development, career exploration, and how we’re building connections across the region. ACTE is the country’s largest non-profit association for the advancement of education that prepares students and adults for successful careers. The VISION conference highlights high-quality CTE in high schools and postsecondary schools and emerging trends in the field, while also providing numerous networking opportunities.

Successful first year of WBL connections

It was a great first full school year of fostering WBL connections. Nearly 300 students applied for WBL opportunities through Compass along with numerous connections between employers and schools. This is exciting when you look at how many schools were just getting started with WBL. They embraced the program, reserved class time to introduce students to the process, worked through how to offer academic credit, and set up processes for their schools. North Dakota is making great strides in connecting students to WBL experiences and we’re excited to foster the growth of the program.

Spreading the word about sponsorships

Sponsorships are an incredibly important tool in career exploration and workforce development. In these partnerships, employers cover all or part of a student’s postsecondary school costs in exchange for a signed work agreement. It’s a fantastic way for students to reduce their schooling costs and secure a job after graduation, while at the same time, enabling employers to build their future workforce with employees who have the education, skills, and training they need.

This summer, we’re diving into sponsorships at Golden Path. We’re working with employers to offer more opportunities and highlight those opportunities in Compass. We’re also updating our website to include more details about sponsorships and clarify the steps for both employers and students. Finally, we’re spreading the word through messaging that will start this fall. In the meantime, contact us to learn more about sponsorships.

Highlighting Compass and WBL at state conference

Golden Path Solutions will discuss Compass and WBL during three presentations at the NDCTE Professional Development Conference Aug. 5-7 in Bismarck. More than 500 instructors, counselors, and administrators from North Dakota middle schools, high schools, and colleges are expected to be in attendance. The conference will provide information, resources, and instructional tools to help school professionals build skills in designing, implementing, and evaluating CTE programs. Our presentations, along with NDCTE and XAP, will cover the four-year rolling plan, how students can learn about hot jobs, Career Profiles, and WBL. We will also present about sponsorships, with special guest Brenda Zastoupil from the North Dakota Career Builders program. We’re looking forward to connecting with professionals across the state and highlighting our experience with WBL and Compass.

Governor’s Summit explores AI and more

The June 17 Governor’s Summit on Innovative Education in Bismarck highlighted North Dakota’s success in embracing new, innovative ways of educating students while also reminding us there is more work to do. Focus areas of the summit included how to use artificial intelligence (AI) in the classroom to prepare students for their futures, while also reducing teachers’ mundane tasks so they can focus on more meaningful work. (See just-released state guidance on how schools should be using AI here). The summit also addressed competency-based education, highlighting four schools that moved to self-paced and competency-based learning. This session included a panel of three amazing students who shared their experiences with these systems. We want to thank Governor Doug Burgum and Superintendent Kirsten Baesler for driving this important event and inspiring us to think about what’s next.

Future Forum drives collaboration and innovation

The June 4 ND Future Forum in Grand Forks brought together individuals from industry, healthcare, education, energy, government, and more to focus on the future of North Dakota. It was a great event that created opportunities for building connections and fostering a spirit of innovation. We were fortunate to be part of the group. North Dakota is a big state, but we have close connections and can get things done. Solving problems and driving growth is made easier by the collaboration from people across the state, across agencies, and between education and industry. Good things are happening for the future of North Dakota. Thank you to the Greater North Dakota Chamber for holding the event and Minnkota Power Cooperative for hosting.

A Millwright Specialist stands in the Anchor Mechanical shop in Cummings, ND
An employer visits with students at a career fair in Grand Forks, ND
A panel of four people discuss connection and innovation at the ND Future Forum
The Cardinal IG safety manager stands in front of the company's logo.

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More information

Contact Patrick for more information or to connect about opportunities with Golden Path Solutions.