Next school year, Georgia’s 9th graders will be required to pick a career path. There are 17 career pathway clusters to choose from. Teachers will be tasked with helping students find their way into their future careers. There are many good and bad points in this program that can be debated forever, but as a parent of two artistic students, I was a bit surprised to find that there are no arts or entertainment clusters.
Ok, so call me a dreamer. The education powers that be have made it clear that arts are not an important aspect of education. In fact, there are those that will say that it is a long-shot that students will make money in a career that is Arts centered. Still, I think kids should have an option to work towards a career in the arts be it visual arts careers like graphic design, classical instrumental music, or singing and dancing. I don’t think it should be ruled out as an option.
Meanwhile, the 17 Career Pathway Clusters are (with my personal descriptors of each pathway)
1). Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources: farming, meat production, food science, and regulation
2). A/V Technology and Communications: Broadcast technicians, news persons, writers, (other school systems have arts under this category, but as a parent helping kids with college sources, all communications departments do not include arts. In fact, many do not.)
3). Architecture and Construction: Interior designers, commercial and industrial designers
4). Business, Management and Administration: marketing, international business
5).Education and Training: Self explanatory
6). Finance: accounting, auditing, banking
7). Government and Public Administration: Governance, National Security, Foreign Service
8). Health Science: Doctors, nurses,
9). Hospitality and Tourism: restaurant, hotels
10). Human Services: Employment specialists
11). Information Technology: All things computer related
12). Manufacturing: Factory workers, product distribution
13). Marketing, Sales and Service: retail, personal services
14). Public Safety and Security: police officers, firemen
15). Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics: Aerospace engineers, automotive, computer hardware, robotics
16.) Transportation, Distribution and Logistics: Air traffic controllers, Bus drivers, pilots, train engineers
17) Energy : Green energy, electrical, power plants
Looking over this list, and after looking up job descriptors, I must add that these pathways are too vague to help any students begin to know where to start. I dare say that teachers will be confused too. I think it would be better to have a half dozen pathways or less, such as art and architecture, math and science, literature and communications, business and legal, Information Technology (computers), and service related… or something like that.