Middle School Career Exploration

Welcome To WEMOCO's Career Exploration Activities

Welcome! We've designed this page to help you start thinking about careers. Why should you explore careers in middle school? The more careers you are aware of, the more knowledge you'll have when the day comes to select a career - or several careers. 

Have you heard of career clusters? A career cluster is a group of careers that share common features. If you like one job in a cluster there is a good chance you will like others too. Learning about these overlapping connections in careers increases your understanding of valuable "transferable" skills - skills that you learn which are useful in multiple careers. 

Below you will find Part 1 - 4 activities that make up our "virtual tour", and Part 5 - 7 activities for further career exploration. 

Who Are You? How Does That Match to Potential Careers?

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Part 1: Take career cluster interest survey!
Everyone has a different way to describe themselves and what they like to do. This survey lets you rate activities you enjoy, your personal qualities, and school subjects you like. Then you will find out which career clusters are a match for your interests. 

How long will it take? 
The survey will take 5-10 minutes. When you reach the page labeled "Career Cluster Activity: The Results," note your top three career clusters and return to this page. 

Part 2: Now that you have your top 3 career clusters from the survey, click here to begin the Career Exploration Worksheet.

Learn More About Your Top Three Career Clusters

Part 3: Find your top three clusters in the list of 16 career clusters below, and read the descriptions for an overview of careers in each of those three career clusters. 

Next to the description you will see all of the WEMOCO programs that fit into this career cluster. Some programs are in more than one cluster. Click on the WEMOCO program names to view the videos about programs that might interest you.

Career Cluster
Programs at WEMOCO
Agriculture Career Cluster IconThe production, processing, marketing, distribution, financing, and development of agricultural commodities and resources including food, fiber, wood products, natural resources, horticulture, and other plant and animal products/resources.
Architecture Career Cluster IconCareers in designing, planning, managing, building, and maintaining the built environment. 
Arts Career Cluster IconDesigning, producing, exhibiting, performing, writing, and publishing multimedia content including visual and performing arts and design, journalism, and entertainment services. 
Business Career Cluster Icon
Careers encompass planning, organizing, directing and evaluating business functions essential to efficient and productive business operations. These career opportunities are available in every sector of the economy. 
Business management and entrepreneurship is integrated into each Career and Technical Education program at WEMOCO.
Education Career Cluster Icon
Planning, managing, and providing education and training services, and related learning support services. 
Finance Career Cluster Icon
Planning, services for financial and investment planning, banking, insurance, and business financial management. 
Financial education topics are part of every Career and Technical Education program at WEMOCO.
Government Career Cluster Icon
Executing governmental functions to include governance; national security; foreign service; planning; revenue and taxation; regulation; and management and administration at the local, state, and federal levels. 
Health Career Cluster Icon
Planning, managing, and providing therapeutic services, diagnostic services, health informatics, support services, and biotechnology research and development. 
Hospitality Career Cluster IconCareers encompassing the management, marketing and operations of restaurants and other food services, lodging, attractions, and recreation events and travel-related services.
Human Services Cluster IconPreparing individuals for employment in career pathways that relate to families and human needs. 
Information Technology Cluster IconBuilding linkages in IT occupations framework for entry-level, technical, and professional careers related to the design, development, support and management of hardware, software, multimedia, and systems integration services.
Law and Public Safety Cluster IconPlanning, managing, and providing legal, public safety, protective services and homeland security, including professional and technical support services.
Manufacturing Cluster IconPlanning, managing and performing the processing of materials into intermediate or final products and related professional and technical support activities such as production planning and control, maintenance, and manufacturing/process engineering.
Marketing Cluster IconPlanning, managing, and performing marketing activities to reach organizational objectives.
STEM Careers Cluster IconPlanning, managing, and providing scientific research and professional and technical services (e.g., physical science, social science, engineering), including laboratory and testing services, and research and development services.
Transportation, Distribution & Logistics graphicPlanning, management, and movement of people, materials, and goods by road, pipeline, air, rail and water and related professional and technical support services such as transportation infrastructure planning and management, logistics services, mobile equipment, and facility maintenance.

Part 4: Return to your Career Exploration Worksheet to answer questions.

Thoughts on Planning Your Career

Part 5: Watch the video "4 Skills & 4 Steps to a Successful Career".

What is the Job Outlook for Careers I'm Interested In?

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Part 6: Visit these online resources to learn more about careers you are interested in.

Career Coach is a career exploration tool designed with a Finger Lakes region focus. The site can help you find new careers, benchmark employee salary information, or investigate career development opportunities using current local data on wages, employment, job postings, and associated education and training.

Ideas to Start Career Exploration Now

Drawing of boy in front of laptop computer with symbols representing thoughts around his head.
Part 7: You can find programs and activities for exploring careers through Rochester organizations. Please note that the following programs are not associated with Monroe 2 Orleans BOCES or local school districts. If you are interested in any of the following, discuss the program with your parents. 

Exploring is a career-education program that allows you to learn more about a particular career through hands-on activities led by people out in the real world.
A youth development program open to all school age youth up to 19 years old, who want to have fun, learn new skills, and explore the world. Youth who participate in 4-H find a supportive environment and opportunities for hands-on learning about things that interest them. 

iCanCode's mission is to jump start lower and middle school kids digital literacy and afford our youth in the Rochester community the opportunity to unlock their tech future and learn about computing in a fun digital sandbox. 

At Code Ninjas of Rochester, kids learn to code by building their very own video games. 

The Challenger Learning Center of Greater Rochester inspires interest in science and math. Every student is 100% engaged in a state-of-the-art facility that incorporates hands-on science activities. 

Girls entering 8th grade can experience hands-on math learning that can lead to future real life opportunities. Use math to uncover mysteries in the world around you.