Governor Roy Cooper has declared March 2021 as Students@Work℠ Month in North Carolina to encourage students to explore the types of jobs that exist in their communities and across the state. Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, employers remain committed to helping students learn about career options. To facilitate this year’s initiative in a safe and engaging way, businesses are opening their virtual doors to approximately 18,000 students throughout March and at other times during the school year.
“During the pandemic, Students@Work has adapted,” said Gov. Cooper. “I’m grateful that businesses have found creative ways to virtually promote career awareness and readiness at a time when our students need these experiences the most.”
The North Carolina Business Committee for Education (NCBCE) and the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction are the primary partners for the Students@Work℠ program. NCBCE is a business-led, education non-profit (501-c3) that operates out of the Office of the Governor.
One advantage to having all Students@Work℠ programs be virtual this year is that the nearly 200 participating businesses will be able to accommodate more students than ever before because physical space and locations aren’t an issue.
Students participating in Students@Work 2021 will be exposed to careers in the education, energy, finance, engineering, hospitality, legal, manufacturing, pharmaceutical, and technology industries along with careers in the public sector. For the first time, there will also be a Students@Work℠ Health Care Day spotlighting careers that can be found in hospital and health care settings across the state. WakeMed, Vidant Health and UNC Lenoir Health Care are all serving as hosts for the March 3 event.
State government is participating as well. The Office of the Governor and NCBCE will host students on March 4, and the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality will host students on March 9.
Students@Work is run through North Carolina’s Work-Based Learning Navigator. The Navigator is a free online tool co-developed by NCBCE that connects education to career. The platform brings together members of the business, education, and workforce development communities in a space where they can post, search for, and measure work-based learning opportunities.
For more information about Students@Work℠ Month, visit www.ncbce.org.