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In 2023, the City of Nampa had a novel idea: Connect students in Nampa School District’s CTE programs with local employers to ignite their passion for their chosen career and explore opportunities within their communities. With the support of the Nampa Chamber of Commerce, 12 local businesses hosted 60 students to let them experience their dream job for three hours. Students left with more knowledge of what it takes to succeed in their careers, and employers had an opportunity to connect with up-and-coming talent in meaningful ways.

They called it IGNITE Nampa, and we loved the idea so much that we’re inviting schools statewide to host their own IGNITE CTE events in 2024. It’s easier than you think—and we’re providing the tools and resources you need to get started. Follow the links to download resources you can customize!

2-3 months out

Contact businesses and invite them to participate.

  • Each CTE program has its own Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) made up of regional business leaders who are vested in ensuring their future workforce has the skills and experience they need to be successful and productive employees. Ask your TAC members if they or anyone they know would be willing to welcome a small group of students to their business for three hours on Thursday, Feb. 1, 2024, and then share this email invitation with them. 
  • Ask your local Chamber of Commerce to invite their members to participate. Customize this email to start the conversation. 
Smaller schools can join forces with other districts in your region to share the load and increase your capacity.

1-2 months out

Create an agenda.

  • Regardless of how many students and businesses participate, students should have roughly the same opportunities. At a minimum, all students should be briefed on proper etiquette and any applicable safety rules before leaving for their IGNITE CTE experience. All businesses should welcome students, give a tour of the facility, let students job shadow, and ask questions. Use the sample agenda to get started!
  • We want every IGNITE CTE event to feel exciting and special—and we want every student to feel like their community supports their career preparation efforts. While not required, consider kicking off the day with a group breakfast featuring local dignitaries, such as your superintendent, mayor, and representatives of the Chamber of Commerce. If you decide to have guests at your events, contact them now to get on their calendars. 
Work in other CTE programs in promoting and preparing for IGNITE CTE. For example, invite students in your Culinary Arts program to make breakfast for the kick-off or boxed lunches for participants. Or assign students in your photography or media production classes to act as official photographers and videographers!

Work out logistics.

  • Share the flyer with students.
  • Once businesses are lined up as hosts, send a registration form to your CTE students. 
  • Assign students to host businesses and work with your school district to arrange transportation. Don’t forget to arrange transportation to and from your student’s home schools!

Two weeks out

The week before

  • Send a news release to your local newspaper or TV station(s) inviting them to cover the event.

The day before

The day of

You can use Perkins money to help defray the cost of transportation related to the event.
Have students in your digital communications or graphic design classes compile the photos and videos captured by student photographers on the day of the event into a highlight video you can play at a future chamber of commerce meeting—or to promote IGNITE CTE next year!

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