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Education and training is vital as we equip you with skills to achieve career success. But what if we flipped the conversation and first identified the job you wanted, THEN developed a plan to equip you for that job? This is where Community Promise can help.

Students, here's how Community Promise works for you. We're all about making connections. Marion and our greater region provides an exceptional environment to meet great people and explore tremendous career opportunities.

There's no start date. There's not a beginning or end. Your career pathway is unique to you.

Here's how you might discover it:

Career Exposure

Career readiness begins in our middle schools with a planned approach to exposing students to unique industry and careers that exist in our community. Exposure targets both students and parents alike. The following activities will support initial exposure and connections to community based career opportunities:

  • Guest speakers
  • Career Explorer Clubs - Clubs are active at Vernon Middle School, Excelsior Middle School, and Oak Ridge Middle School. These after school clubs explore local industry and learn about the unique career pathways in a hands on way.
  • Career Fairs / STEM Institutes
  • Parent/Student Explorations
  • Regular material distributed to students and parents on current job openings in the community and future opportunities made available through our Job Profile Database

 Career Experience

As students enter high school, a more intentional connection is made with local careers. Experiences will include but not be limited to:

  • Field trips
  • Job Shadows (Grades 10-12) - Applications are typically due in September of each year.
  • Internships (Grades 11-12) - Applications are typically due in November, February, and April of each year.
  • Guest speakers
  • Future Workforce Events that educate parents and students around the realities of our new economy
  • Community Mentors
  • Exploration of Community Promise Job Profiles

Career Pursuit

Maybe you already completed an internship and can picture your future in that business. Ready to sit down with that business and your school counseling staff to create a plan that hopefully leads to a real job?  Tell us you're ready! We might know how to make that happen. 

During your sophomore and junior year, we'll bring partners to the table to provide authentic opportunities for students who roll up their sleeves and actively pursue careers here at home. 

Some students may choose to pursue a career at an accelerated rate. Have you found a Community Promise Job Profile that you're ready to get serious about? If you've entertained the idea of establishing professional roots and making a career commitment, let's talk about the job that interests you. 

Students may be provided the opportunity to apply, interview, and be selected to train for and potentially fill a Community Promise Job Profile upon graduation. If a student is paired with a job profile, school administrators will collaboratively develop an academic plan with the student and business partner that best aligns with the job profile. Each school district will develop a custom plan within their course offerings to support the attainment of professional competencies identified as critical to the success of the individual in the career they are pursuing. 

Are you ready for that step? Tell us!

Community Investment - Pursuit Promise

During your senior year, some employers may choose to advance students into formal apprenticeship programs or support student enrollment into unique career academies and certification programs delivered by a local university or community college. As additional financial resources are required to complete this training, students are provided the opportunity to enter into a Pursuit Promise with their business. This promise solidifies the intent of both the student and business to a long term employment relationship.

When students get this far, a financial plan outlining necessary training costs will be collaboratively developed by the school district, higher education partner and community promise partner (the business).

If both the business partner and student agree to invest financially towards completion of the plan, additional financial resources will be made available through the form of a Pursuit Grant (read more in next step).

Community Promise - Pursuit Grants

With a Pursuit Promise in place (previous section), business partners agree to fund a portion of the final certifications or courses needed for an employee to be fully trained for a specific role in their company. This is when our community promise provides the opportunity for our community to invest in YOU.

Pursuit Grants support the hand-off from our schools to our Community Promise Partners who have already invested in a student over the previous two years through exposure, experience, and initial pursuit. 


Pursuit Grants are the final gap closer. Think of it as the third leg of the stool. It's career training funded by yourself, your business partner and your community. Pursuit Grants provide final investments in people that lead them towards being successful citizens in our Marion community. 

Are you at this stage and interested in applying for a Pursuit Grant? Let us know!

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