Post Secondary Options

  • There are several types of employment options for graduating students. These include competitive, supported and supportive employment. Most students who choose to enter the work force right after high school will enter into competitive employment. 

    What is Competitive Employment?

    Competitive employment is when a student locates, secures and performs a job with minimal (if any) assistance. 
    When going from school to competitive employment it is important to remember the following: 

    • Look for opportunities, which offer “on the job training” so that you do not have to pay for the training. Look at careers that have a future. Also look for companies that offer advancement. Moving up in the company can provide more earning potential. 
    • Look for companies that offer fringe benefits. This is especially important regarding health care. Check with your insurance provider now. Most companies will only cover dependents who are in school. Once a person graduates and is no longer a full-time student, he or she is usually covered only until the end of the month in which they have graduated unless they plan to enroll in a post-secondary program full- time. 
    • Get started with your job search early. Consider doing a career internship or work release during your senior year. This will give you an “in” so that you are not left without a job after graduation in June, when the market is much more competitive. These opportunities will also allow you to try out different jobs/careers before you are dependent on the income from your job. Starting while you are in high school may also allow you to get in the required time for benefits to kick in before your parents benefits no longer cover you. 
    • Follow the steps to locating and securing employment below. 

    What is Supportive/Supported Employment?

    These are possible options for students with disabilities or handicapping conditions. Students with IEP’s and/or 504 agreements, at times, may require supported or supportive employment. 

    • These options offer varying degrees of support from short-term assistance to full-time ongoing support. 
    • Most of these services are provided with funds from the Office of Vocational Training (OVR). 
    • These supports and services are individualized to meet the needs of each child. 
    • They can involve formal vocational training through programs like the Hiram G. Andrews Center, Abilatech, or the MBF center. 
    • To learn more about these options and supportive/supported employment, see your child's special education teacher or Carlene Stover, the district’s Transition Coordinator.

    When searching for job students can utilize: 

    Internet search 
    Job or career fairs 
    PA CareerLink of Chester County
    Temp agencies

    Securing a job:

    1. Develop a quality resume.
    2. If possible, get an application ahead of time, complete it and have someone proof read it before returning it to the company.
    3. Practice interviewing with a friend, counselor or parent.
    4. Learn about the company with whom you are interviewing.
    5. Drive to the interview location the night before so that you can avoid getting lost the day of the interview.
    6. Dress appropriately for the job for which you are applying.
    7. BE ON TIME for your interview.
    8. Greet the interviewer appropriately; shake hands firmly, smile, know the name of the person with whom you will be interviewing.
    9. Send a follow up note to the interviewer.

    School to United States Military Service:

    1. All branches offer free training and college credits but check out each branch to see who offers the best deal
    2. Many of the career tracks can lead to civilian jobs. Many times military personnel are given priority for placement in civilian positions.
    3. Economic Benefits
      1. Salaries are improving but still lag behind civilian jobs.
      2. Benefits are excellent and are improving
      3. Excellent money for college programs in each branch
    4. Steps to enlisting (START EARLY: no later than fall of your senior year)
      1. Contact a recruiter in each branch
        1. Shop around before signing any paper work
        2. Each branch offers different packages
        3. Different training/ jobs
        4. Different financial rewards
      2. Take the ASVAB 
        1. This is the test that the military uses along with your physical condition to make admission decisions as well as job/career track decisions.
        2. You only need to take the ASVAB once. The military can translate it for each branch of the service.