CAPS Career Class Kickoff

CAPS Kickoff Focuses on Human-centered Design Thinking
Posted on 09/12/2022
CAPS students discuss human-centered design thinking with their groups and staffSi prefiere ver esta página en español, haga clic en "Language" en la barra de "Admin" en la parte superior de esta página y seleccione "Spanish."

Students who enrolled in career classes through the TriDistrict Center for Advanced Professional Studies (CAPS) started off their year by building community and working through a human-centered design project to help them begin thinking like a professional. The TriDistrict set up the project in partnership with Rêve Academy, which helps students build marketable skills for the modern workplace.

Simley High School, South St. Paul Secondary, and Two Rivers High School juniors and seniors in CAPS classes this year came together to learn the basics of human-centered design during their first week of classes. Students from the business entrepreneurship, healthcare, IT and computer science, and transportation and skilled trades classes learned how companies are reimagining existing products to work better for their customers. Rêve Academy taught students about the kitchenware company OXO, for example, which uses customer feedback to ensure that their tools are comfortable and easy to use, even if a customer struggles with a condition like arthritis. After learning about human-centered design, students discussed other products that could be improved, especially for the customers in their field of study.

Rêve Academy then gave students the design challenge of building, improving, and supporting a more positive and inclusive school culture at their respective home high schools. Each student interviewed a classmate to understand their perspective and work on the design challenge based on what they learned. The four CAPS classes will reconvene later in the fall to revisit this work, and ultimately design, refine, and present their findings and proposals to their home high school principal and administration.

TriDistrict CAPS is a profession-based learning program that is a collaboration between Inver Grove Heights Schools, South St. Paul Public Schools, and West St. Paul - Mendota Heights - Eagan Area Schools. The TriDistrict CAPS Program is a member of the international CAPS Network of programs that promote career exploration, professional skills development, and preparation for workplaces and careers of today and tomorrow.

Students begin their CAPS classes by learning professional skills to prepare to interview for internships in the spring. Students who earn internships get hands-on experience in the career field of their choice alongside local professionals. CAPS currently offers four classes for juniors and seniors: Business & Entrepreneurship, Healthcare, IT & Computer Science, and Transportation & Skilled Trades.

Interested in learning more or finding out how you or your organization can get involved? Contact TriDistrict CAPS Program Director Ben Kusch at [email protected] for more information.