School Counselor Launches New Website to Help Students

This blog was originally published September 29, 2020, on the Indiana Office of Career Connections and Talent News.

This school year Heidi Schellinger, a school counselor at New Prairie High School, launched a new website to help her students connect with local job opportunities. We recently caught up with Heidi to learn how her experience as an inaugural member of the 2019 Skillful Indiana Governor’s Coaching Corps (SGCC), a partnership between Skillful and the State of Indiana, informed her work and helped those she works with.

The SGCC program provides career coaches with the tools and training they need to better serve Hoosiers through an intensive 8-month training program, informed her work and helped those she works with. For Heidi, one of the most valuable things she learned from this training was how to leverage her connections and network with other career counselors.

Through the program, Heidi met Matthew Presley, Regional Director of Work-Based Learning, who introduced her to Adam Konieczny and Tim Franke from Duneland Media, a media company Heidi collaborated with to create a website that helps connect New Prairie High School students with local employers and local job opportunities.

The new EmployNP website has already delivered applicants for some of the employers who have posted their job opportunities on the site. “Our community has a lot of open jobs and we have kids that need those jobs, but until now we didn’t have a way to network,” said Heidi. “That’s why we developed this website.”

A picture of the Employ NP homepage.

 

Through the SGCC, Heidi also learned about the benefits of skills-based hiring practices and now encourages employers to look at a candidate’s skills rather than requiring a college degree. “Many local employers have a four-year degree requirement in their job postings. I ask them ‘what does that four-year degree mean to you?’ Because I have students already that are extremely organized, will show up on time every day, work hard, are very trainable, but they don’t have a four-year degree.” From conversations like these, Heidi has convinced employers to take high-school interns, when before they would only take college interns.

Want to get involved with EmployNP?

Register for free as an employer and post jobs for New Prairie High School students at EmployNP.com/employer-registration/

To learn more about the SGCC, please visit Skillful.com/IndianaSGCC