Career Exploration

What is career exploration?

"Career exploration" refers to programming that introduces younger students to a variety of possible careers. These programs are primarily focused on elementary and middle school students, while high school students will explore careers in more depth through work-based learning.

PrepareRI plans to grow a sustained system of career awareness and exploration opportunities that will enable teachers and schools to provide students multiple opportunities to gain exposure to high-skill, high-growth careers. Our goal is that 100% middle schools in Rhode Island will offer career awareness and exploration programming by 2020.


upcoming event: ja Inspire career fair

What:  Hands-on career exploration for 2000 8th grade students.  RI employers from high-wage/high-demand industries, CTE programs, and postsecondary education programs will lead students in industry-related, hands-on activities.

When:  Tuesday, March 27, 2018, 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.  

Where:  RI Convention Center

Contact if you are a business interesting in exhibiting or a school interested in having your 8th graders participate.


Menu of Career exploration options

PrepareRI leverages preexisting successful partnerships in order to offer a menu of low or no-cost options for schools to expand career awareness and exploration programming for K-12 students. 


View the Career Exploration Menu


RIDE will leverage New Skills for Youth funding to serve as a one-time investment that will bring career awareness and exploration into every school in Rhode Island. Partners are identified by their ability to provide high-quality experiences as determined by local, state and national leaders.

The number of programs on the menu will grow as we learn more about successful practice within Rhode Island and throughout the country. If you have a program that you believe may be a fit for the menu, please reach out to


Current partners

  • INCubatoredu: The INCubatoredu program offers students an authentic entrepreneurship experience. In this program, students have the opportunity to create and develop their own entrepreneurial idea. Real entrepreneurs and business experts serve as volunteer coaches and mentors, guiding student teams through the Lean Startup processes of developing hypotheses about a business concept, testing those hypotheses, adapting, and continually learning and improving. This cycle of experimentation is combined with foundational business concepts such as marketing and finance.
  • Junior Achievement Rhode IslandWe are the nation's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their futures, and make smart academic and economic choices. Junior Achievement's programs—in the core content areas of work readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy—ignite the spark in young people to experience and realize the opportunities and realities of work and life in the 21st century.
  • Project Lead the Way: Project Lead The Way (PTLW) is a not-for-profit organization that develops STEM curricula for use by US elementary, middle, and high schools. We create an engaging classroom environment unlike any other. PLTW empowers students to develop and apply in-demand, transportable skills by exploring real-world challenges. Through our pathways in computer science, engineering, and biomedical science, students not only learn technical skills, but also learn to solve problems, think critically and creatively, communicate, and collaborate. We also provide teachers with the training, resources, and support they need to engage students in real-world learning.
  • Rhode Island Commerce Corporation: The Commerce Corporation works with public, private and non-profit partners to create the conditions for businesses in all sectors to thrive and to improve the quality of life for our citizens by promoting the state's long-term economic health and prosperity.
  • SENEDIAThe Southeastern New England Defense Industry Alliance (SENEDIA) was formed to identify, champion, and coordinate issues that contribute to our national security and benefit employers, local communities, the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security, and other federal government agencies.  SENEDIA’s vision is to be a catalyst for thought leadership and technical innovation in undersea technology, cybersecurity, and other critical defense technologies.  Our mission is to enable the development of the innovative technology, foster thought leadership, and facilitate required workforce development.