The Path to a Successful Future.

Broome / Tioga

Let's Peak!

The purpose of Peak is to assist all those involved in early career preparedness programs across Broome and Tioga Counties. This includes all students, job seekers, educational institutions, and key business partnerships within the region. With this program, we hope to tackle the question of access and ascension within the workforce. As of July 2017, Broome County holds a 5.3% unemployment rate, number fifty among all sixty-two New York State counties, while there exist still 4,859 vacant positions. The current working population is aging out of the positions they hold, dictating that a new workforce is necessary.

the Goal

To introduce students to career opportunities and develop skills to make informed choices about college, internships, jobs and opportunities in our region.

To connect local business to students to foster the growth of a successful workforce pipeline; strengthening our community and economy for the future.

the Path

To effectively communicate the wide array of opportunities available to students in a cohesive and sequential process, aligning students with opportunities that fit with their natural talent and interests.

the Strategy

The creation of a cohesive and sequential process to communicate and expose students to targeted activities that will engage and excite them to make informed choices about their future.

The Peak Path to a Successful Future will connect students with local businesses, internships and mentoring to foster relationships to build a vibrant future workforce.

the Path

Pre-K - 7TH Grade

  • After School programs
  • Career days
  • Careers in the classroom
  • Design challenges/Project Based Learning
  • Junior Achievement
  • Tours at BOCES
More Info

Career Awareness

  • Conduct career assessments starting at a young age to direct students’ values, interests, and lifestyles onto suitable potential career path(s).

Career Exploration

  • Foster early interest in careers through career days and careers in the classroom events featuring family members of students and guest speakers from key industries
  • Promote better understandings of potential career choices through development of career focused curriculum, such as through Junior Achievement programs.
  • Students at this stage should conduct exploratory research and complete project-based learning assignments based on potential careers.

Career Preparation

  • Encourage participation in pivotal regional after school programs such as the Broome County YMCA, Family & Children’s Society, and the Urban League.
  •  Students should take part in schools’ extracurriculars such as sports teams or clubs to foster a sense of teamwork and community. 
  • Introduce students to variety of secondary education options including public high schools, private institutions, and career-oriented programs such as those found at BOCES.

8TH Grade

  • Career aptitude
  • Career exploratioN curriculum (ja) 
  • Hands-on career exploration fair for all 8th graders
More Info

Career Awareness

  • Continue career assessments to sustain students’ interests in entering the workforce and determine any shift in career aptitude and preferences.

Career Exploration

  • Build on existing career exploration curriculum from K-7, e.g. “mini-capstone” project culminating all career-oriented research and assignments completed by student to date in a Career Awareness Portfolio.
  • Introduce skills necessary to succeed in high school through coursework and school orientations and tours with local public-school districts and BOCES.
  • Host a Hands-On Career Exploration Fair featuring top employers in the area. Each employer should bring prepared literature, a video presentation, interactive educational activities, or another method to engage students. 

Career Preparation

  • Students, especially those who are looking to take advantage of early college and career track programs, such as P-TECH, should receive orientation(s) for career oriented programs and institutions of secondary education of interest. 
  • Students should start to build connections in the community. Students should be encouraged to continue after school activities, begin volunteering with local organizations or meet one on one with an advisor to seek out youth leadership programs. 

9TH Grade

  • Career nights
  • Company Tours
  • Speakers in the classroom
  • Use of the Your Future website
More Info

Career Awareness

  • Begin early introductions and meetings with school counselors. Provide students with Career Awareness Portfolio for effective reflection at meetings.
  • Meetings with counselors cover options for post-secondary credentials, training institutions, and workforce placement.  

Career Exploration

  • Schools and local employers should partner to host specific "Career Nights." Career Nights should be structured to showcase possible career tracks from entry level positions forward. Small companies in the same industry can host joint Career Nights to showcase variety of placement options.
  • Local employers should host company tours and/or bring in representatives to speak in classrooms. Speakers in the classroom may be a better option for those employers who are not large enough or unable to host Career Nights with schools.

Career Preparation

  • Students will begin creating resumes and conduct mock interviews under guidance from their academic/career advisors.
  • Advisors to connect students for one-on-one shadowing with local employers.
  • Students should continue to utilize the Your Future Website and participate in extracurricular activities.

10TH Grade

  • BOCES Career Fair
  • Bring college students and recent grads into the classroom
  • Career nights
  • Exposure to pathways to military, the workforce, and higher education
  • One-on-one shadowing
  • Project-based learninG IN CLASSROOMS
More Info

Career Awareness

  • Students to continue with one-on-one meetings with counselor.
  • High School Alumni in the military, workforce, and at secondary institutions should be invited to speak to current students.

Career Exploration

  • Students should be encouraged to attend the BOCES Career Fair as a part of their academic coursework. 
  • Teachers should develop project-based learning surrounding professional skills, employment options in the area, and those regarding specific events such as Career Nights and the BOCES Career Fair.
  • Students in good academic standing who have indicated an interest in post-secondary education at a college or university should be encouraged to take community college courses while in high school.

Career Preparation

  • Students will begin creating resumes and conduct mock interviews under guidance from their academic/ career advisors.
  • Advisors to connect students for one-on-one shadowing with local employers.
  •  Students should continue to utilize the Your Future Website and participate in extracurricular activities.

11TH Grade

  • Career nights 
  • College nights
  • Internships
  • Part-time employment
  • Pre-apprenticeship
  • Project-based learning in classrooms
  • Visits to colleges, training sites and work sites
More Info

Career Awareness

  • Student’s counseling should be tailored towards postsecondary planning. 
  • Students should reflect on correlation between Career Awareness Portfolio and academic goals.

Career Exploration

  • Based on post-secondary plans, students should prepare respective applications to colleges.
  • College nights should be ran similar and in tandem to career nights; college and employer visits should be encouraged.
  • Learn about alternatives to college through part-time employment, pre-apprenticeships, and other work-based learning (WBL) opportunities that can be discovered on Your Future.  

Career Preparation

  • Develop an understanding of personal finances and workplace culture through project-based learning assignments in the classroom and conversations with a young professional mentor outside the classroom.
  • At this point, students are encouraged to be aware of educational requirements, financial aid, costs, and pay rate for two to three careers of interest.
  • Students should continue to pursue WBL opportunities, such as internship programs.

12TH Grade

  • Apprentice information
  • Career nights
  • College nights
  • Internships
  • Introduction to YOUNG PROFESSIONALS groups 
  • Job Fairs
  • Part-timE employment
  • Pre-apprenticeship
  • Signing days
More Info

Career Awareness

  • Students not looking to pursue a formal post-secondary education should be connected by advisors to possible employers, apprenticeships and/or military recruiters if they have not been so already through WBL opportunities.

Career Exploration

  •  Schools should introduce students to local Young Professional groups and programs such as the YP alliance, Southern Tier Young Professionals, Emerging Leaders Society and the Urban League.
  • Schools, in conjunction with Career and College Nights, should host a final Job Fair and Senior Networking Night with local industry professionals to teach students how to use formal and informal networks to form connections and the value of networking and personal and professional branding.
  • Schools should celebrate student achievements; those who have been recruited to a post-secondary institution or professional sports team for athletics, have committed to a post-secondary education program, or employment should be recognized by a school-wide signing day.

Career Preparation

  •  Industry-specific workplace standards as well as occupation-specific skills should be researched and practiced; part time employment and internship programs serve as great WBL opportunities. Can also pursue micro-credentialing.
  • Students to develop career-specific goals and steps on how to achieve them, such as attending job fairs, interview coaching, and pursuing other professional development opportunities post-graduation.

Successful Future

  • 2-year degree
  • 4-year degree
  • Career skills programs
  • Direct to Work
  • Master or Doctorate Degree
  • Military
  • Registered Apprenticeships
More Info

 A successful future can and should be measured in different ways based on the student at hand. Students may pursue a post-secondary degree at a two- or four-year institution, join the armed forces, continue with their apprenticeship programs, or immediately enter the workforce. Any of the above routes taken, however, does not mean the student should stop their focus on career development post high school graduation. 

Students should be encouraged by collegiate and career counselors and/or their employers to continue developing crucial transferable soft skills or industry specific credentials that will allow them to pursue higher paying careers. Additionally, if students are aware that the career path they have chosen may require a Master or Doctorate Degree, they should be advised to meet early on with career counselors at their post-secondary academic institution or discuss possible tuition reimbursement or alternative training programs offered through their employer. 

By introducing the Peak Path in schools at a young age, students will be inspired to pursue their individual successful futures and achieve their peak performance in the workforce. This path will strengthen the connection between education, personal development, and professional development for students in Broome and Tioga Counties. Growing up with an education dedicated to professional development will help ensure that employers have the talent they need to flourish and produce better outcomes for the youth, their families, and their communities.

the Model


Career Awareness Portfolio – Educators are encouraged to integrate career-oriented tasks into their curriculum. Activities completed are to the discretion of the educator and their administration, however, whatever activities are completed should be compiled into a portfolio to follow the student throughout their academic career.   

Career Day – Career Days are intended for use in primary school education. Career days, unlike career nights, are designed to introduce students at a young age to the working world. Career Day organizers can invite key industry professionals from the area, including the parents of children to make the event more personal. Career Day invitees should be encouraged to develop engaging material for children aged K-7th grade. Career Day can encompass Careers in the Classroom, wherein industry professionals are invited into the classroom during the school day, or can be treated as a special during school assembly with a panel of different industry professionals. 

Career Exploration Fair – The Career Exploration Fair is a hands-on styled career fair. The Career Exploration Fair is geared towards children in middle school to get them excited about their future in the workforce. Instead of lengthy discussions or presentations on pay, benefits, roles and responsibilities, employers who take part are encouraged to bring engaging materials such as easy to read literature, a video presentation, and interactive educational activities.

Career Night – Career Nights are designed to showcase the variety of employment options offered by different industries found in Broome and Tioga counties for students ready to narrow down their career paths. Career Nights should be organized by industry; for example, a separate Career Night may be held for the Healthcare industry from the Manufacturing industry. Additionally, Career Nights may feature one large employer in an industry, or several smaller employers. If there is only one employer, a presentation format followed by question and answers or break out groups is suggested. If there are several employers, the use of a large space such as a cafeteria or gymnasium is encouraged; this will allow several employers to set up tables to exhibit their business.

Careers in the Classroom – If it is not an option to bring employers or professionals into the classroom, then teachers should prepare a few basic lessons introducing the different career options in the region’s top industry sectors. Additionally, introducing students to careers prior to a career fair or other event ran by professionals will give them a better idea of what employers they would be interested in talking to based off of possible future career choices. 

Project Based Learning – Project based learning should go hand in hand with Careers in the Classrooms. As part of the lessons, educators should be encouraged to develop a career-based project that will be later included in the student’s Career Awareness Portfolio. 

Work-Based Learning – Career or industry specific typically paid work opportunities designed to introduce students of high school age to the activities and experiences they should expect in a specific career/position in addition to teaching transferrable skills. WBL opportunities will strengthen the partnership between school districts and employers 

Model Materials.

Career Awareness Portfolio – The culmination of a student’s completed work; all of the documents below as well as any other career related activities selected by the educator should be kept on file. It is recommended that the Career Awareness Portfolio be digital so that it may easily follow a student throughout the course of their academic career within a participating district.

Career Aptitude Website – Students may utilize this website in order to identify career interests. Test should be taken multiple times throughout a student’s academic career to determine any shifts in interests. Results of each test should be saved. This is a two-part aptitude test; first is the career interest segment followed by O*NET Job Zone career matching. Students should be encouraged to use one of their career matches for their career exploration project unless they have a specific career in mind. My Next Move is an O*NET Interest Profiler sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Interest Profiler

Career Exploration Fair Worksheet – During the Career Exploration Fair, or any career fair the students may attend, educators are encouraged to require the use of this sheet. The Career Exploration Fair Worksheet incentivizes students to speak with five to eight employers attending the fair to take down basic information regarding future employment opportunities and the possibility of an internship or apprenticeship while in school.

Career Fair Worksheet

Career Exploration Project – After taking their career aptitude test, educators should be encouraged to integrate this Career Exploration Project into their classroom curriculum. The worksheet provided gives instructions on how to research their chosen career and what questions they should address in a two-part written and oral project. This is a key example of Project-Based Learning. 

Career Research Project

Resume Worksheet – When learning about resumes, educators may utilize the attached resume worksheet to help students determine what is valuable information they can include on a current or future resume. If students know of a job they will be applying for in the near future, educators should encourage them to fill out the resume worksheet with the job in mind. 

Resume Worksheet

Sample Interview Questions Worksheet – This activity provides students the opportunity to write out and prepare answers for commonly asked interview questions. Students may also draft their own questions to develop a better understanding of what is important to share in an interview. Students should be encouraged to review their answers to their questions sheet and the Tips and Tricks reference sheet prior to any mock or real interviews.

Ten Terrific Tips and Tricks – This sheet serves as a quick reference guide for students going into their first interview. This sheet pairs with the Tell Me About Yourself reference guide and the Sample Interview Questions Worksheet. 

Interview Tips and Tricks

Tell Me About Yourself – Students should review this sheet along with the Ten Terrific Tips and Tricks for an interview guide prior to any interview practice. This sheet provides students with a reference on how to answer the most common but difficult interview question.

Tell me About Yourself

the Stories

Brock McWherter

Age: 21

Hometown: Harpursville: Broome County NY

Career: Field Engineer

Employer: Slavik & Company, Inc.

Location: Johnson City: Broome County NY

Read Brock's Story

Kevin Wu

Age: 20

Hometown: Johnson City: Broome County NY

Career: Student at Binghamton University

Employer: Intern at The Agency

Location: Binghamton: Broome County NY

Read Kevin's Story