NICC Career and Work-Based Learning Manager, Gena Gesing, receives state honor
Monday, September 26, 2022
In Academic Year 2021-2022, 10,854 students participated in Work-Based Learning opportunities through Northeast Iowa Community College. These opportunities included job shadows, worksite exploratory events, career immersion experiences, professional skills development and other activities.
ANKENY, Iowa—Gena Gesing, manager of career and work-based learning for Business and Community Solutions at Northeast Iowa Community College, was awarded the 2022 Iowa ACTE Counseling and Career Development Professional Award on Tuesday, Sept. 20, at the Iowa Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) Conference in Ankeny.
The annual honor is part of ACTE’s Excellence Awards and “recognizes school counselors and career development professionals who have demonstrated commitment to connecting students with opportunities for success, shown innovation in career exploration and development, and have advocated for CTE as a viable option for all students,” according to ACTE.
All candidates were evaluated on contributions to student success, innovations in career exploration and development, and leadership. State award winners will submit their information to be considered for regional recognition with regional winners being considered for national recognition.
“Gena serves as a voice for outreach and engagement of middle and high school students for career pathway exploration. Gena works with both rural and urban districts, seeking to find ways to support the varied needs of each setting. Her partnerships with industry have led to more opportunities for students. The work facilitated by Gena to support high quality intermediary networks across the state so every student has access is evident through her leadership and the Iowa Intermediary Network website. Gena is truly deserving of recognition for her work at the regional and state level,” stated Dr. Tara Troester, president, Iowa Work Based Learning Coordinators.
Kristy Volesky, work-based learning consultant at the Iowa Department of Education, said, “Gena is a strong advocate for CTE and the importance of supporting CTE education at both the secondary and post-secondary levels. Through her passion for connecting careers to classroom content, Gena has fostered industry partnerships impacting students positively across the state. Gena is a leader and through her leadership with the Iowa Intermediary Network, she has advanced integral connections with state industry leaders for the betterment of Iowa’s students. The engagement with leaders has led to a variety of virtual and in-person experiences to increase equitable access in northeast Iowa as well as for students statewide.”
Wendy Mihm-Herold, Ph.D., vice president of Business and Community Solutions, honored Gena, saying, “Gena has been leading the Iowa Intermediary Network for Career and Technical Education and Work-Based Learning for years at the local and state levels, and her dedication and leadership make her very deserving of this recognition.”
In Academic Year 2021-2022, 10,854 students participated in Work-Based Learning opportunities through Northeast Iowa Community College. These opportunities included job shadows, worksite exploratory events, career immersion experiences, professional skills development, interactive career fairs, mock interviews, educator in the workplace and educator personal development.
ABOUT COLLEGE AND CAREER CONNECTION (CCC): CCC is a program that exposes students to high-demand career areas and sets them on the pathway to career and educational success beyond high school. The program provides work-based learning opportunities for students in partnership with local businesses. NICC's College and Career Connection is a member of the Iowa Intermediary Network.
ABOUT THE IOWA INTERMEDIARY NETWORK (IIN): IIN prepares students for the workforce by curating work-based learning experiences with industry to students and educators throughout Iowa. The intermediaries service educators and students by matching work-based learning experiences to align with district, classroom and personal career goals. The intermediaries serve industry by maximizing their time by matching industry partner work-based learning experience interests with the needs of the region, therefore minimizing the time industry needs to spend understanding all the intricacies of student and educational needs. Through work-based learning experiences, the Iowa Intermediary Network is supporting the Future Ready Iowa goal for 70 percent of Iowa’s workforce to achieve post-secondary education or training by 2025 by helping students explore careers to discover their future career.
For more information on how to get involved in work-based learning opportunities at NICC, visit www.nicc.edu/ccc.