The Upper Sandusky Business Advisory Council meets 6 times during the year – January, March, May, July, September, and November – in conjunction with the Wyandot County Office of Economic Development.
A survey of juniors and seniors was completed to find out if they felt Wyandot County was part of their future plans. It was found that only 17% of the students plan to live in Wyandot County in the future as 50% are unsure if the area offers what they are looking for in a career. This is despite 91% reporting that the quality of life is good in the county. As a result of this survey, the BAC continues to be interested in helping students become more aware of local opportunities for work and careers. Employers want to share expectations and help schools promote the development of work ethic, life planning and “soft skills”.
To this end, the middle school had a careers day in which local businesses came and talked about various jobs in their industry. The 8th graders also visited Sentinel Career and Technical Center to learn about the opportunities offered there. The high school had various local employers speaking each week to juniors in the required college and careers class. The college and careers class also incorporated more financial planning curriculum to help with life planning. The high school also held an employer-student panel discussion that was attended by all juniors and seniors. Also, students signed up on the Community Opportunity website which is a local website promoting local businesses, internships, employment opportunities, and career exploration. In addition, high school sophomore students participated in the Wyandot County Manufacturing Day program, touring local manufacturing operations to experience the modern day work environment, and gain awareness of the various career opportunities contained therein.
During Ohio’s In-Demand Jobs week, the elementary schools had local business owners and government officials come and present and the high school and middle school offered various exploration opportunities such as a trip to Wyandot Memorial Hospital for those interested in health careers and exploring Marion Tech’s mobile manufacturing lab.
The Wyandot Employment Task Force, which is an offshoot of the BAC and the WCOED, continued its work (bringing together people from industry, business, education, higher ed and others) to design strategies to connect local talent with employment opportunities as well as to look at attraction and retention. This has resulted in more partnerships with local businesses in offering jobs or shadowing opportunities for our students. There has also been some interest from the Wyandot Community Foundation in offering some type of skilled trades scholarship.