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Student Portrait

Career Connected Learning

Together, we ignite career interest in local industries by offering authentic field experiences, STEM challenges, and career preparation and launch opportunities for students.

Our Goal + Strategies

The Apple STEM Network is dedicated to promoting Career Connected Learning opportunities to students in North Central Washington. Our goal is to empower students to explore careers in STEM by offering authentic field experiences, competitive challenges, and career exploration, preparation, and launch opportunities.


Career Connected Learning encompasses a wide range of activities, including increasing career awareness, fostering youth apprenticeships, internships, and mentorships with local industry, businesses, and community partners.

Hover over the Strategies to learn more about each one


Promote and Increase Participation in Career-Connected Field Experiences

Working closely with local school districts, we assist in incorporating career connections into STEM field experiences. Programs like the Okanogan STEAM in the Field experiences at Scotch Creek help students connect their learning to future careers within local context.


Promote and Highlight STEM Competitive Challenges and Opportunities for Students

By increasing public engagement in competitive challenges with our network partners (i.e. FIRST Lego League or Vex Robotics), we encourage active participation. We also work towards increasing business involvement in STEM challenges by seeking their in-kind and financial support. Leveraging the power of social media, we share and celebrate school engagement in STEM, creating a sense of excitement and inspiration.


Promote and Increase Participation in Career-Connected Learning for Students

Collaborating closely with the North Central Workforce Development Council, we co-lead the regional Career Connect Washington Network. Through this partnership, we connect industry and educational partners to develop comprehensive Career Exploration, Career Prep, and Career Launch opportunities for all youth. This includes facilitating internships, apprenticeships, and mentorships that provide invaluable hands-on experiences and guidance.

Career Connected Learning

Programs + Partners

Woman showing high school student the bones in a foot during the 2022 College and Career Expo in Wenatchee

Career Connected Learning was identified as a “Game Changer” in the 2022-2026 Our Valley Our Future Action Plan. After collecting feedback from thousands of individuals, the Game Changer outlines community goals that: prepare both youth and adults for new and emerging workforce opportunities, create equal respect for and understanding for all career and credential programs and pathways, and ensure that everyone has access and resources to learn.

Students talking with local business at the 2022 College and Career Expo in Wenatchee

NCW College & Career Expos are free events across North Central Washington where students explore college and career opportunities. During the events, educators and local industry professionals introduce students to a wide variety of work experiences that engage, train and inspire future careers in high-demand fields with regional employers. 

Man helping student in mechanic shop

The North Central Career Connect Washington Network is co-led by the Apple STEM Network (represented by North Central ESD) and Skillsource (North Central Workforce Development Council). The Network’s goal is to connect students’ education with employment opportunities and promote development, support and expansion of CTE graduation pathways in school districts in the region.

Students attend the Eastern Washington Computer Science Fair in 2022

The Computer Science Fair is a regional event that invites high school computer science students and teachers to come together for a day of exploration in computer science, engineering, and technology industries. Attendees spend the day connecting with exhibitors, learning from engaging speakers, and getting hands-on experience through workshops.

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