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Career Clusters for High School Students

Technological advances and global competition have transformed the nature of work. Tomorrow's jobs will require more knowledge, better skills, and more flexible workers than ever before. Tomorrow's workers must be prepared to change jobs and careers several times, continually updating their knowledge and skills.

To prepare today's students for tomorrow, schools are working to help students achieve in challenging subjects. One key approach to this goal is to provide students with relevant contexts for learning.

Career clusters link what students learn in school with the knowledge and skills they need for success in college and careers.

Career clusters identify pathways from secondary school to two- and four-year colleges, graduate school, and the workplace, so students can learn in school and what they can do in the future. This connection to future goals motivates students to work harder and enroll in more rigorous courses.

Students can use career clusters to investigate a wide range of career choices. The career cluster approach makes it easier for students to understand the relevance of their required courses and helps them select their elective courses more wisely.

"After working with industry automotive professionals, I now see a need to attend college...Now I know how important chemistry is in preparing to be an automotive technician."

      -a recent HS Graduate

Career Cluster Plans of Study, Knowledge and Skills Charts, and More

Use these guides, along with other career planning materials, to map out an educational and career plan.

Courses listed in the sample plan of study should be individualized to meet each student's educational and career goals. All plans should be customized to meet high school graduation requirements as well as college entrance requirements in the student's state and local community.

Knowledge and Skills Charts provide more detail about each career within a specific cluster.

For access to these documents (in Excel, Word, and PDF) follow these links:

Arrow High Growth Industries

Arrow Other Career Clusters

Arrow Related Cluster Sites

The National Consortium on Health Science and Technology Education Website provides information related to Career Clusters on shaping national policy on the preparation and employment of health care personnel. Health Science Website
The Information Technology Website for Educators provides information regarding the Information Technology Career Cluster and resources for researching this topic further. Information Technology Website
The TDL Website is the website for this particular cluster and outlines various topics relating to its development and deployment. Transportation, Distribution & Logistics Website

(Source: States' Career Clusters Initiative, 2008, States' Career Clusters Logo

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