Experiential Learning & Professional Success
Career awareness and preparation
One essential aspect of chemical education is to prepare students for a broad variety of career opportunities. Chemistry courses at all levels best serve students and society by increasing awareness of the transforming power of chemistry and by providing opportunities for students to consider and experience such careers.
For chemistry-based technology programs, which focus on immediate employment, internships and co-ops are especially important. Participation in these types of learning experiences is also important for students who may struggle in traditional academic settings. In addition to increasing student awareness of the many and varied career options presented by the broader chemical enterprise, the experiential learning opportunities outlined in subsequent sections provide students the opportunity to demonstrate career readiness outside of the traditional classroom setting.
- Students are made aware of potential careers in the field.
- Transferable skills, such as critical thinking, verbal and written communication, collaboration, and workplace ethics and professionalism are emphasized.
- Students are prepared for the conditions they will experience upon employment.
- Students are provided with and trained to use resources, equipment and facilities appropriate to the regional employment opportunities.
- Activities such as internships, cooperatives, research, job-shadowing, job-based simulations, and mentorships can provide the necessary exposure; programs identify these or other opportunities that will best serve the long-term career interests of their students.