2020 Cluster Layouts
Dave Calabro’s Video Message
Teacher Comments Relating to Curriculum
Again, the curriculum was very well designed and helped our kids to be well prepared to get the most out of their time at Job Spark!
The Career Cluster card activity was great. I put the kids in groups and made it a competition. It made them aware of careers that they didn’t know fell into certain categories.
It is a great opportunity for students. Thank you for providing this event!
This (curriculum) was very well designed and helped our kids to be well prepared to get the most out of Job Spark!
Definitely prepared the students for the JobSpark field trip.
What was the most valuable part of the JA JobSpark program?
“The most valuable part was talking about the education required for the careers that students want to enter.”
“The students were able to dive deeper into possible career opportunities beyond salary.”
“The most valuable part was talking to students about how they can present themselves. I think we’ve spent a lot of time going over what different things they are interested in can lead to as a profession, but we don’t talk a lot about how to present oneself during interviews, etc.”
“The most valuable part is the connection to the real world. I thought it mad it real for students. It wasn’t just an article to read. It got them interested in the different careers out there.”
“HANDS ON by far [was the most valuable part of JA JobSpark.] This is an invaluable time where students have access to so many different careers.”
JA JobSpark FAQ’s
Q: What is JA JobSpark?
A: JA JobSpark is a hands-on career expo for all Indianapolis 8th graders, held on September 24th and 25th at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.
Q: Who can participate?
A: Public Schools in Indianapolis (Parochial, Charter, and schools in surrounding counties as space allows.)
Q: Who is planning and leading this event?
A: A coalition of central Indiana educators, organizations and representatives from over 130 companies working in partnership on the Career Success Initiative, led by Junior Achievement of Central Indiana. These companies have currently committed approximately 1,400 volunteers to engage with students throughout the day.
Q: How much does it cost?
A: There is no fee for schools to participate. All materials, including interactive curriculum, materials, JA JobSpark t-shirts for students, lanyards for teachers and students, backpacks, healthy snacks, industry-provided materials and a keepsake program guide, will be provided.
Q: Which businesses will be represented at JA JobSpark?
A: Over 130 businesses have committed resources, volunteers and industry experts. The City of Indianapolis has a vested interest in impacting academic and career success for students in Indianapolis. See Industry Section for a list of JA JobSpark companies.
Q: What industries will be represented?
A: Industries with future high-demand jobs and careers are represented and divided into eight industry clusters: Advanced Manufacturing, Engineering and Logistics; Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources; Architecture, Engineering and Construction; Business and Finance; Government, Law and Public Service; Health and Life Sciences; Hospitality and Tourism; Technology
Q: Is JA JobSpark a job fair?
A: No. Students will have quality interactions with skilled and professional workers who work directly in these jobs and will have a number of hands-on opportunities to utilize equipment and participate in interactions that actually occur within the industries.
Q: What if my school needs transportation to the event?
A: Schools must provide their own transportation to and from the event.
Q: What is the schedule for the day?
A: JA JobSpark will run for two days. Schools will attend on one day only during a designated time slot for their school. Schools may break up their days to bring different classes on each day. Students will interact with a host of skilled and professional workers for a total of an hour and forty-five minutes. These adults will receive prior training, and be prepared to engage students in planning for their futures.
Q: I am bringing a large group. Will there be volunteers assigned to my group during the event?
A: Volunteers are not assigned to groups of students. It is up to the teacher/school to determine student flow and put a plan in place with their students. Volunteers will monitor student participation and encourage engagement in hands-on activities.
Q: With a variety of college and career readiness activities out there, how is JA JobSpark different?
A: JA JobSpark is modeled after similar hands-on career expos that have been successfully implemented in several other U.S. cities, including Mobile, AL, Nashville, TN and Portland, OR. Over a period of a few years, best practices have been determined, metrics have been captured and a proven track record of success has been established. JA JobSpark is the first of its kind in Indianapolis. Participation is expected to reduce drop-out rates, increase graduation rates, and increase students’ ability to plan for a successful future. JA JobSpark is a massive community wide initiative including educators, businesses, city and state government, local nonprofit organizations, and higher education.
Q: What can my students expect to get out of attending JA JobSpark?
A: JA JobSpark is meant to “spark” an interest in students. Through participation in JA JobSpark, students will learn about themselves – their skills, interests and values for workplace readiness and will learn about industries and occupations in demand. Students will have a better understanding of the courses to take in high school, a track for post-secondary and a clear career pathway identified.
Q: How will students prepare to attend JA JobSpark?
A: JA makes it easy! Teachers will receive online training and materials will be provided. Prior to attending JA JobSpark, students will participate in 3 sessions delivered by their classroom teacher. As a part of the curriculum, students will take a career interest assessment and utilize their results to guide them through the industry clusters at the event. After students attend JA JobSpark, teachers will deliver one 30 minute session to recap and follow up from the event.
Q: How will the student flow work within the 8 Industry Clusters?
A: Students will spend a total of 1 hour and 45 minutes in the JA JobSpark experience. During this time they will actively participate or observe hands-on activities to demonstrate real jobs within the industry. Teachers are responsible for their students at all times during JA JobSpark. It is at the teacher’s discretion to determine the student flow for their group. Teachers can keep an organized flow throughout the experience, or allow students to move freely. Meeting points can also be designated at the halfway mark.
Q: How does JA JobSpark live on past the event?
A: There will be opportunities for students to continue to engage with JA JobSpark businesses, including future job shadow and/or internship opportunities. It is encouraged that teachers share career related resources and JA JobSpark information with parents. Through JA EduSpark, educators will have the opportunity to participate in industry tours, hear from panels of professionals highlighting in-demand careers, and tour the JA JobSpark hands-on experiences as a way to connect industry and classroom learning. There are additional learning opportunities that can be found in the JA JobSpark curriculum, and many student resources on the JA Jobspark website Contact Junior Achievement about its K-12 in-school programs, summer camp, JA BizTown, JA EduSpark and more.