East Business Advisory Team

The East Business-Career Advisory Board provides an essential bridge between schools and the workplace.

Advisory board members will collaborate with our educators to inform curricula, help organize career-based learning activities, and ensure our students have experiential opportunities to support their Academic and Career Planning and better understand the multiple pathways to prosperity.

Our advisory boards gives students the opportunity to build relationships with mentors early and learn from successful adults. 

Member Testimonials

Gary Jahnke, Huzzard 
We are excited about working with students, teachers, parents, and the community in the area of Career Based Learning. Huzzard believes that experiential learning (on the-job and on-site) is the most effective learning when making a decision about working in a specific vocation or profession.

Huzzard encourages career exploration and highly recommends each high school student spend a minimum of eight hours (before they graduate) with 2-3 different mentors in fields they have an interest. The continuum of education is life-long. An emphasis on early childhood education has proven to result in higher achievement academically and socio-economically. Huzzard believes it is equally important to help students be proactive in making mindful decisions about the path they will take after high school.

Suzanne Maas, Thrivent

I began my adult life as a classroom teacher and seem continually surprised to have enjoyed a long career in business. I know how fluid a career can be, and how constant the learning process. How else could a self-described math-shy student end up leading a unit that provides business intelligence and data analytics?  

At Thrivent, I find ways to help newcomers get established, whether through designing our corporate on boarding road map, leading our division’s undergrad internship program, or as a mentor and ally to young professionals. There are so many paths for young people to choose, and it’s easy to become overwhelmed without some guidance.

Members of the Advisory Team will work to:

  • Assist us in ensuring our students have experiential opportunities to support their Academic and Career Planning and better understand the multiple pathways to prosperity.
  • Provide additional resources and expertise to teachers.  
  • Engage businesses with the classroom and their future workforce.

Benefits of a business-career advisory group

  • Shows students how classroom learning connects with the world of work
  • Creates valuable networking contacts with businesses and creates a welcoming environment for businesses to engage with school staff
  • Helps keep CBL relevant to changes in workforce and career demands, is a source of advice and input to shape CBL curriculum and experiences
  • Connects individuals in business with individual teachers
  • Creates opportunities for business to donate time, money, in-kind services to the classroom, extra-curricular activities, the school
  • Helps identify real-world situations for classroom learning experiences

Benefits for Teachers
Teacher participation in career-based learning and in the planning and management of involving businesses provides unique, interesting, and meaningful opportunities:  

  • Industry contacts: opportunities to develop relationships with local leaders
  • Access to supplemental resources for instruction – tools used in industry, expand your variety of materials 
  • Leadership positioning: key role in response to new learning initiatives
  • More realistic instruction – related to real world examples 

Perhaps the most significant payback for teachers is less tangible: it’s fun for the teacher, rewarding and productive for the student. Career-based learning helps students connect and do better.   
Benefits for Students
Nearly every student has a time when they wonder about their future and how what they are doing in school will benefit their future. It’s the rare student who is absolutely sure of what they want to be and the pathway they need to follow in order to realize their dream. Career-based learning provides benefits that 

  • Find a career(s) that fits my interests and talents 
  • Explore through different career-oriented experiences 
  • See a clear connection between what I’m learning in school and what I’ll need to pursue my career - answer the question, “Why do I have to learn this?”
  • Engage in hands-on learning to connect my classroom learning with the real world 
  • Choose the best courses of study that relate to my career goals 
  • Develop job skills relevant to future my employment
  • I’ll learn how to apply knowledge to real life situations 
  • Be motivated to take responsibility for my own career development and learning
  • Have goals for continued education and future employment
  • As a disabled youth I can acquire higher-paying jobs

Benefits to Businesses 
The active involvement of business helps create win-win opportunities for business, students, teachers, and the community. Such involvement leads to renewed interest in and opportunities for professional development of all staff, and benefit from the creative, high-energy spirit that students bring to the workplace.  

  • Achievement-oriented students 
  • Positive positioning of your company with school/students 
  • Community name recognition and goodwill; positive PR 
  • Long-term workforce development 
  • Reduced recruiting and training costs 
  • Increased professional development of regular staff 
  • Increased employee loyalty 
  • Understanding of generational impact on company 
  • Influence the shaping of curricula to meet employment needs.
  • Teacher as “supervisor” and intermediary 
  • Direct line of communication to teachers and parents of students for recruitment