Students get a jump start on careers

January 20, 2010 2:56:26 PM PST
For freshmen at North Brunswick high school, coming to school also means mapping out their futures with the help of a software program called "career cruising". "It really made me evaluate what jobs would be good for me," Nikki Kady said.

North Brunswick is one of 16 school districts in New Jersey selected by the state Department of Education for a two-year pilot program on personalized student learning plans.

"What's expected of us is to develop some type of program that will engage all students in looking at their personal academic and career interests," program coordinator Debra Serafin said.

Each district was free to create its own method.

The software tells students the education and training they would need for various careers, and how much money they could expect to make.

The program extends to eighth grade at North Brunswick's Linwood Middle School.

The personalized learning approach not only helps students focus on their personal interests, but it also helps give them new meaning on the importance

"Now that I realize that the job I would like to pursue requires biology, I take the class more seriously," Ray Habib said.

"I think this is helping the students to connect their education to a career they might want to pursue someday in the future," Susan Masone, a parent volunteer, said.

The state will study the results and decide how to deliver personalized learning plans to every student in New Jersey.