Utilizing the many tools provided by the State Board of Education, the Idaho Department of Labor, the Idaho Department of Education, and others – the goal of Next Steps Month is that every high school senior (and underclassman) seriously thinking about what they’ll do after high school. Although it seems far off, graduation is just around the corner.
Next Steps Month is the culmination of the evolution of Idaho’s College Application Week. Recognizing that one, pre-designated week might not work for every school, the initiative was expanded so that schools could choose any week in October to participate. Now, and even more importantly, the event also promotes a career planning focus for students considering career technical (CTE) programs, apprenticeships, and other non-collegiate pathways.
You can help your students “Take 5” for their future by incorporating Next Steps Month into your lesson plans, hosting an event at your school, or simply generating awareness about the month. Here are a few ways to make your students’ next steps easy:
- Participate in College Application Week (choose any week in October that works for your school)
- Encourage students to “Take 5” for their future by offering extra credit for tasks they complete (using the Next Steps Month Activities list). There are more than 30 tasks students can complete using the Next Steps website (in 5-30 minutes each).
- Use the Next Steps Month Activities list in your lesson plans – allowing time for students to complete some of these tasks in class
- Host a financial aid help night at your school
- Promote the Next Steps Month evening events being held in a city near you
- Decorate your school/classrooms with college gear or materials that promote career pathways/options for students
- Find a way to highlight students who have made plans or know what they want for their future (have them talk about how they came to this decision/plan) so they can encourage their peers
- Put up Next Steps Month posters and send Next Steps Activities flyers home with students (or send to parents via email/post on your campus portal)
- Invite guest speakers to talk about career pathways and opportunities
- Invite colleges to come in and talk with seniors about their options
Download the materials from this page to help make your Next Steps Month activities a success!