With support from the Illinois Science and Energy Innovation Foundation, the Chicago Learning Exchange is leading Energizing Opportunities, an innovative project to illuminate learning pathways to careers in the electrical utilities industry for high school-age youth.
In partnership with Chicago Public Schools Career and Technical Education Department, Dawson Technical Institute at the City Colleges of Chicago, Mumkin Studio, INTREN, and ComEd, CLX is developing an engaging and exciting program to expose young people to electrical utilities careers, promote further study, and prepare them for employment in the energy and utilities sectors. The program will have a special focus on Overhead Electrical Linework, an area of high growth in the energy sector. Youth will participate in learning experiences throughout the year, culminating in a six-week summer learn-and-earn program that will provide hands-on, project-based experiences that seek to build interest in the field. Participating youth will also earn digital badges that recognize their skills and accomplishments and unlock additional opportunities.
On April 2nd, juniors in the engineering program at Hancock College Prep participated in a unique Job Shadow Day (JSD) focused on careers in the Energy and Utilities industries. Students visited ComEd’s state-of-the-art training facility in Bridgeport and Dawson Technical Institute at the City Colleges of Chicago where they heard from leaders in the energy field, toured training facilities, and met skilled laborers. Attending JSD placed students on the pathway to participating in the Energizing Opportunities summer program
The thing that interested me in the Energizing Opportunities program is the fact that I get to learn something new every day; the fact that we can make a real impact on our community and the world; and the fact that we have to be physically active. Another reason I am interested in this program is because we will do hands-on activities while learning key skills for energy careers. Since we are doing these hands-on activities, we also get to meet new people, meaning that we are going to have to work with our social skills and we are going to have to work as a team.