Online registration for MiCareerQuest begins

Registration opens Aug. 15 for MiCareerQuest Southeast, the largest career exploration experience for public and private high school students ever planned for southeast Michigan.

About 10,000 high school students from Oakland, Macomb, Wayne, Livingston, Monroe, and Washtenaw counties are expected to converge Nov. 28 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi to interact with representatives from more than 80 companies and organizations. Showcased will be a broad range of in-demand occupations in four career quadrants: advanced manufacturing, construction, health sciences, and information technology.

The school registration link can be found on the MiCareerQuest Southeast website: OakGov.com/MiCareerQuestSE. The school registration period will close on Oct. 1, or when all the available student slots are filled.

"Michigan Works! offices, county economic development teams, colleges, businesses and trade organizations from across the region have come together to plan this exciting, hands-on day of career exploration for high school students," Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson said. "Everyone sees the value in bringing such an expansive event like this to southeast Michigan to really show students the broad range of rewarding career opportunities available to them."

The Detroit-area event is being mirrored after MiCareerQuest in Grand Rapids, held there for the past four years.

During the online registration process, schools will select their time slot preference: 8 to 10 a.m., 10 a.m. to noon and noon to 2 p.m. Those farthest away from the site will be given priority for the 10 a.m. to noon session, to enable ample time to travel to the event. There is no cap on the number of students a high school can send, but there is a limit per county, so event organizers urge schools to register as quickly as possible. Home-schooled students interested in participating should contact their local school district.

"We don't want to leave any school out that wants to join us at MiCareerQuest Southeast, but we can only accommodate so many students in one day," said Jennifer Llewellyn, manager of workforce development for Oakland County. "So the earlier you commit to sending your school to the event the better."

School districts that may need financial assistance for bus transportation should contact their local intermediate school district.

Each career quadrant will have approximately 20 exhibitors companies, schools, trade unions and other organizations featuring hands-on, interactive activities designed to showcase various occupations. Students attending MiCareerQuest Southeast will be required to visit each of the quadrants during the event.

"The excitement is building among our exhibitors as they put their plans in place," Llewellyn said. "They see the value in MiCareerQuest Southeast helping shape our region's future workforce. These enthusiastic, working professionals will engage directly with students and share their expertise and advice. Students should come prepared with plenty of questions."

The Michigan Talent Investment Agency (TIA) is the presenting sponsor of MiCareerQuest Southeast. Beaumont Health (health sciences quadrant), Society of Manufacturing Engineers (advanced manufacturing quadrant), and DTE Energy, Consumers Power, Michigan Building and Construction Trades Council and MUST (Management and Unions Serving Together) have joined together for the platinum sponsorship in the construction quadrant.

Event organizers are still seeking a platinum sponsor for the information technology quadrant. Additional major sponsors include Oakland Community College and Automation Alley. There also are more than 20 smaller sponsors, representing their respective career quadrants. The full list of sponsors and event information is available at OakGov.com/MiCareerQuestSE.

"This is an employer-driven event and MiCareerQuest Southeast can only take place with the generous support of sponsors," said Irene Spanos, director of Oakland County's Department of Economic Development & Community Affairs. "We thank all of our sponsors to date, especially our presenting and platinum sponsors, for stepping up financially. We need other organizations that see the value in exposing so many high school students to in-demand occupations to join us."

Stephanie Beckhorn, TIA director of workforce development, said the experiential learning approach that MiCareerQuest events take and the opportunity to engage with business professionals is critically important in providing students with a variety of career-path choices.

"Immersion into hands-on learning is what ultimately helps students find their passion so they can, in turn, discover their purpose," Beckhorn said.

Sponsorships help pay for the facility rental, display company operational services and equipment, security, student and volunteer supplies, food for volunteers and exhibitor staff, and subsidizing student transportation where needed, Llewellyn said. Platinum, gold and silver sponsors receive prominent visibility at the event and in the county's publicity and social media activities plus have a seat at quadrant steering committee.

There are some exhibitor spots still open in all the career quadrants and there is no registration fee to participate. For the full list of confirmed exhibitors, visit OakGov.com/MiCareerQuestSE.

For more information on sponsorships and exhibit opportunities, please contact Beth Tomaszewski at 248-823-5127 or via email, TomaszewskiE@OakGov.com.

Published: Tue, Aug 14, 2018