Community » Greater Latrobe NEXT Career Pathways Program

Greater Latrobe NEXT Career Pathways Program

Greater Latrobe School District offers a state of the art educational facility incorporating the best academic and technological initiatives currently available. We also understand the importance of providing well-rounded experiences that can help students on the path to career-readiness when they graduate from Greater Latrobe. We are proud to incorporate our career-focused program, NEXT, to the abundance of opportunities we have for our students to utilize. Students have the opportunity to work with our NEXT Career Pathways Coordinator, who is a full time staff member available to students and can help explore career interests, develop a plan, and prepare for their next steps after high school. Students are given the opportunity to learn about five suggested career pathways:
  • Arts & Communication
  • Health Science
  • Engineering, Industry, & Manufacturing Technology
  • Human Service, Hospitality, & Public Administration
  • Financial, Business, & Information Technology
Our main focus is to intentionally get students thinking about their future and to help them make better informed decisions about their future. We offer many opportunities for students to explore each of these pathways. 
Starting in seventh grade, students are encouraged to take our career pathways elective course, as well as several other electives in 7th and 8th grade that reflect each of the five pathways. Junior High students also have the opportunity to hear from several guest speakers throughout the school year in our GLJHS Monthly Career Speaker Program, which invites local speakers in various careers and industries to speak with students in the classroom. 
As students progress through junior high, they are given more opportunities to learn about different career pathways. All 9th grade students have the opportunity to tour the Eastern Westmoreland Career and Technology Center (EWCTC) and learn about each of their programs. All freshmen participate in our Freshman Focus course, which uses the "Leader in Me" curriculum, based on the book, "7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens" by Stephen Covey. The course focuses on these 7 habits to help students develop the skills necessary to lead their lives in a truly effective way. Social-emotional learning and soft skills are emphasized in this course.
All sophomores have the opportunity to attend Sophomore College Exploration Day. Students visit one of several post-secondary institutions in our area including, Saint Vincent College, Seton Hill University, Pitt-Greensburg, Pitt-Johnstown, IUP, WCCC (Advanced Technology Center and Youngwood Campuses), and Triangle Tech. Students are given a campus tour and presentation about programs offered. This opportunity helps students decide if college or trade school is the right choice for them (or not) and helps them make better informed decisions about their future. 
Juniors and Seniors have the unique opportunity to schedule the Mentorship course as part of their school schedule. The course allows students to work with a professional in the community in their field of interest. Students will leave the high school during their mentorship period to spend time observing, shadowing, and working with their mentor. Students will also complete a resume, mock interview, and culminating project as part of the course. Not only do students receive course credit towards graduation, but they gain valuable real-world experience too.
Once in high school, students will begin to align the courses they take with their career pathway. In addition to their Core courses, students have many Elective Courses and Advanced Placement courses to choose from that are aligned with the five pathways, which can be found in our Course Catalog here. Students are also given the opportunity to apply for Dual Enrollment, in which certain courses are accepted by six local colleges we partner with for college credits, giving students a head start on their post secondary education. Below is snapshot of all the opportunities students have in high school here at Greater Latrobe: 
Students are also encouraged to meet with their NEXT Coordinator to start exploring careers within the pathways they are interested in. The NEXT Coordinator will provide ample information regarding job data, education or training requirements, job outlook, and more, as well as provide the students opportunities to observe and job shadow the occupations they are interested in most. Students are encouraged to complete at least one job shadow during their sophomore or junior year, as well as complete a mentorship or internship during their junior or senior year where they can be more involved in their selected career path.


One of our most useful tools that we utilize is SmartFutures, a K-12 career planning and portfolio platform that helps schools easily implement the CEW Standards within any classroom. Pennsylvania is the first state in the United States to require that all students graduate with a personalized career plan and portfolio that is tied to clearly defined K-12 career education benchmarks.These benchmarks, called the Pennsylvania Academic Standards for Career Education and Work (CEW Standards), provide the curriculum road map that assures that all students are prepared for 21st century success. 
All students at Greater Latrobe hit these benchmarks when they graduate through district-developed career readiness opportunities as well as through resources available in the SmartFutures platform. 
The Greater Latrobe NEXT program is successful because of our community partners - local businesses, industries, and organizations that work with us and our students to develop these unique and educational career experiences.
In addition, we also partner with the Westmoreland County Forum for Workforce Development, the Westmoreland County Chamber of Commerce, and the Greater Latrobe-Laurel Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce to engage students and advocate for local businesses and industries to meet the needs of our regional economy. 
Latrobe Chamber          Westmoreland Chamber of Commerce            Westmoreland County Forum for Workforce Development
If you are interested in becoming a community partner, please use the links below. If you have any questions - please contact 724-539-4225 ext. 21209 for more information.