Education is all a matter of building bridges. ~Ralph Ellison


Educators have an amazing responsibility to help students not only meet his or her potential and the standards of the state, but to make them aware of how their education is relevant to future careers.

Pretty simple, right?

Integrating real-world examples into lesson plans could be a challenge if educators are unaware of viable careers available in our region. They say seeing is truly believing, and hundreds of educators in Southeast Tennessee believe careers in Advanced Manufacturing and Information Technology are viable, meaningful, and full of opportunity. Industry leaders like Gestamp, E & E Manufacturing, Denso, M & M Mars, Cormetech, Komatsu, Volkswagen, and Valmont have all opened their doors to educators via plant tours to see the amazing advancements and career opportunities in manufacturing and IT for themselves.

Connect with your school district’s Career Coach to learn more about activities related to career education in your district! To help you get started, take advantage of the resources below.

Career Pathways Toolkit

The following nine Pathway Tool Kit cards are designed to inform students, parents and school counselors of the course sequences, post-high school courses and partnering schools continuing the pathways available in our region. Also provided are example careers in each pathway with the salary range of each occupation. The chosen academic pathways for Southeast Tennessee are:

Career Awareness and Discussion Guides

If you asked a student if he or she saw themselves in a manufacturing career pathway, do you think they excitedly answer, YES!? Truth is, many still think manufacturing careers are what their great grandfather used to do with an oversized hammer in an assembly line. To get the conversation going with your students, download any of the free resources in this section.

Project Based Learning

PBLU: Pick a Project – In PBLU, you can download classroom projects and enroll in classes about Project Based Learning. The projects have been designed by the Buck Institute, helping you focus mainly on how to implement a project rather than how to design one.

Buck Institute has a wealth of useful tools, videos, webinars, google hangouts and twitter chats. There are also blogs, books, articles, rubrics, curriculum, planning forms, student handouts, research and more!

Integrated Lesson Plans

Design a Robot – (Grades 6-8) Explore the role of robots in modern manufacturing and challenge your students to design a robot based on a mock target consumer.

Design a Shoe – (Grades 9-12) Guide students on a discovery of the modern manufacturing design process.

Learn to Code – was created to help every child in every school learn about computer science. Features Hour of Code, student and teacher tutorials, professional development and more.

America’s Navy – STEM for the Classroom – Discovery Education and the Navy present a series of interactive lesson plans specifically designed for 9-12 graders to explore new ideas and new worlds related to STEM careers.

Discovery Education Technology Lesson Plans (Grades 9-12)

Advanced Manufacturing and Information Technology Lesson
Plans – Integrated lesson plan templates generated through the TN State Department of Education externships.

Workforce Readiness Tools


  • Bring Your A-Game to Work  Win at work, win at life. What a motto! Available in all six Pathways school districts, this cutting-edge methodology developed by the Center for Work Ethic Development teaches students about the seven foundational behaviors of work ethic that managers demand: Attendance, Appearance, Attitude, Ambition, Acceptance, Accountability and Contact your district’s Career Coach to gain access to the materials!