Career clusters is a classification system that groups occupations into sixteen different clusters based on similarities in foundational knowledge and skills needed to achieve success. These clusters are then broken down into career pathways. Four classes is the typical structure of a program of study sequence in order to completely master all the common career technical core standards of the pathway. For Perkins V students who complete two classes in a sequence are considered a concentrator, and concentrators who also take a capstone course are completers.
Career pathways focus on smaller subsets of related occupations within a career cluster. They connect to educational programs, industries, and careers. Pathways help students focus on and develop a clear, more informed educational plan over time. Courses and training programs are typically outlined in career pathways that can guide students as they develop and maintain progress toward career goals.
The New Mexico Career Clusters Guide is a valuable resource to help guide students as they make important life and career decisions. The guide is designed to be a tool for planning and preparing students for a career. It provides a structure for selecting careers based on linking what they know about themselves with information about occupations and typical training requirements.
The career planning process is the cycle students follow when preparing for employment in occupations that match their interests. The process can be repeated as needed to help students find their place in the world of work. Our updated 2018 guide offers a new element called Recommended Programs of Study to find programs that best prepare students for high skill, high demand, and high wage careers in New Mexico.
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New Mexico Career Pathways
NM Career Pathways is a website that allows educators, parents and students to explore detailed information about their local school districts, labor markets and career clusters. With the use of area-specific data that highlights median wages and annual job openings, this site helps students be able to make an informed decision on a career path that best suits them.
NM Content Standards, Benchmarks, and Performance Standards
Each program of study is reflective of New Mexico’s labor analysis, and includes:
- A strong academic core aligned to NM Graduation Requirements and content standards set forth by NMAC 6.29.3
- An articulated system that links each level of learning to the next
- Opportunities including on-the-job training, mentorships, internships, apprenticeships, etc.
Work-Based Learning Initiative
The Work-Based Learning Initiative (WBLI), is a program that provides funding to institutions committed to establishing connections between students and employers. These connections should expand internship and pre-apprenticeship opportunities for students. Schools must also agree to enter into Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with various employers. The MOU should have a specific Scope of Work and describe the roles and responsibilities between all entities involved, including school administration, business owners, students, and other employers. Partnerships shall include:
- Meaningful work-based learning experiences in alignment with student pathways
- CTE courses that use career and technical education standards to support core academic growth
For more information and an application, contact the CCRB Staff.
- NM Career Clusters Guide-Second Edition Information
- Building Career Pathways Report
- Work-Based Learning Initiative