Project: Achieving Personal Traction

Teacher: Ric Palma
School: Topeka School District
Location: Lawrence, Kansas USA
Start Date: 05/25/2011
End Date: 06/30/2011
Project Plan
Unique Requests of
Participating Mentors:

The teacher expects 30 - 50 students to participate. We need mentors who can provide assistance to students interested in science and math related career fields.

The student and mentor will work together under the teacher's supervision to create an Educational/Career Action Plan. The plan will include the following information which will be included in the student's portfolio: the selected career path; the predicted outlook for the next decade; the requirements; educational preparation while in high school; the appropriate college major and requirements; primary and alternate postsecondary institutions;planned curriculum of study; performance criteria; approximate salary scale; opportunities for advancement; required skills and abilities; personality traits; interests; optional jobs in same field that student might pursue.


The student and mentor will work together under the teacher's supervision to simply develop the skills necessary to connect the dots between their interests/natural abilities, career options in Kansas, Kansas post-secondary options, and overall requirements to compete. The plan will include the following information which will be included in the student's portfolio: 1. Results of Interest and Natural Ability Survey. Students and mentors will discuss the connection between the results of the survey and what the mentor knew about these areas as juniors in high school. They will also discuss the power of contributing and learning simultaneously. 2. Explore the Kansas Department of Labor site. Discuss the connection between the student's interests and natural abilities and broad fields with a focus on those fields that are growing (healthcare, energy, aviation, engineering, etc). 3. Discuss specific career areas within these broad fields that the student is interested in. Remember, this isn't about picking the right career field at this point. It's about skill development and learning how to take an interest and turn it into real action. Rank and pick the career field that the student is most interested in. 4. Determine what's happening in that specific career field within Kansas. Who are the leaders? What are they doing? Who is winning awards for their contributions? Why? Where did they go to school? Which colleges and universities offer the top programs in this field of study? Why? 5. Further research post secondary options. Check with at least two top employers, with the help of a mentor, who hire students from a specific program. Ask the employer what are the strengths and weaknesses, on average, of students coming out of the program.


Students will identify career to research; student will demonstrate ability to locate, identify, and interpret information; will generate choices and make career decisions based upon interests, abilities and values; will design realistic career action plan to reach desired goal. The student will summarize the information gathered from the mentoring process in a Power Point presentation, a portfolio, or a written report; this will be presented at the end of the summer session.



Grade Level:


Content Area:

Career and Education Planning, Writing, Math, Science

Student Outcomes:

The students will retain copies of all information sent and exchanged to mentor during the project.Copies of inventories and website information will be retained. The student and mentor will prepare a final product (portfolio section on project) summarizing the work completed during the telementoring project; this final product will be evaluated.

Evaluation of
Student Outcomes:

The student will complete an evaluation form about the telementoring project. The student and the mentor will also send an e-mail message to the teacher in which they will evaluate their telementoring experience and provide recommendations for improving the project.

Teacher Role:

The teacher will act as the facilitator for the project and will monitor and supervise the telementoring relationship.

Mentor Role:

To maintain communication 3 times a week with the student; to act as advisor and provide career awareness and collaborate with the student on the project.