What is Academic and Career Planning?

Academic and Career Planning, or ACP, is a student-driven, adult-supported process in which students create and cultivate their own unique and information-based visions for post secondary success, obtained through self-exploration, career exploration, and the development of career management and planning skills. 

Why ACP Matters

Definition of E4E

Education for Employment shall incorporate applied curricula; guidance and counseling services under par. (e); technical preparation under s.118.34; college preparation; youth apprenticeship under s.106.13 or other job training and work experience; and instruction in skills relating to employment.

word cloud relating to character traits

Labor Market Information

As the baby boom generation retires there will be plentiful career possibilities for graduates within the Ashland area. The top five growing occupations that will need trained workers include Health Care, Business and Financial, Food Production and Services, Construction, Maintenance & Transportation, and Education and Training. Over the next 5 year period job openings in Douglas County are expected to grow faster than other areas of Northwest Wisconsin. 
Douglas County Work Profile

douglas county work profile

Superior, WI
picture of wisconsin with a star on Superior

Superior, a city of approximately 27,000, is located at the western end of Lake Superior in northwestern Wisconsin. Superior and its neighboring city, Duluth, Minnesota, form the Twin Ports and share a harbor that is one of the most important ports on the Great Lakes.

The Superior School District is a preK-12 public school system with six elementary schools, one middle school and one high school. The district serves a total enrollment of 4800 students. Superior High School is a four year high school, grades 9-12, with an enrollment of approximately 1400 students.

Postsecondary Enrollment Data

 Post Graduate Plans – Class of 2016
post secondary plans graph

(Data from the Wisc. Dept. of Public Instruction)
Technical Schools………………………40.1%
Superior High School Profile

Career Cruising

Students use the online platform of Career Cruising to build a portfolio of career information and documents based on their exploration of their knowledge, skills and interests. During the course of building their portfolio throughout middle and high school, students will be equipped with the tools to plan for their future after high school.

Students access their career cruising portfolio through a link in their PowerSchool login. Students log into PowerSchool and then click the box with the arrow to get to the link to career cruising.

Parents are invited to view their child’s portfolio and given the opportunity to provide comments and feedback. Parents are emailed an access code to login to their child’s Career Cruising portfolio.


screen capture of Career Cruising

SHS Career Cohort Data-Class of 2018 

Survey data results collected from the Class of 2018

  • Students want a review each year tying their high school planning to their post secondary career plans.
  • Students want time to complete career work and have support from their counselors prior to registration each year.
  • Students said that having a junior career conference was useful to their post secondary planning.


According to the American School Counseling Association’s empirical research collected on College and Career Readiness: “College counseling, as provided by school counselors, matters: high school students who saw their school counselor for college information were more likely to apply for college.”

 career planning bubble

Some Telling Statistics on Career Technical Education

In this ASCD Policy Priorities article, Barbara Michelman presents statistics that put career technical education (CTE) in perspective:

-   Percent of U.S. high-school seniors prepared for college math and reading – 37%

-   Percent in a college prep program with rigorous CTE who are college ready – 80%

-   Average high-school graduation rate for students concentrating in CTE – 93%

-   Percent of dropouts who said that relevant, real-world learning would have kept them in high school – 81%

-   Number of U.S. high-school students currently in CTE classes – 11 million

-   Percent of manufacturers who report that talent shortages will affect their ability to meet customer demand – 80%

-   Number of manufacturing jobs currently open – 315,000

-   Number of trade, transportation, and utilities sector jobs currently open – 1,019,000

-   Number of job openings predicted by 2020 – 55 million

-   Percent of STEM jobs open to workers with less than a bachelor’s degree – 50%

-   Percent of those jobs that will require some college or a 2-year associate’s degree – 30%

-   Percent of people with less than an associate’s degree, including licenses and certificates, who earn more than the average bachelor’s degree recipient – 27%

-   Graduates with a technical or applied science associate’s degree out-earn their peers with a bachelor’s degree by – $2,000-$11,000


“Career Technical Education: Pathways Toward Postsecondary Success” by Barbara Michelman in ASCD Policy Priorities, Spring 2017 (Vol. 23, #1, p. 1-7), http://bit.ly/2o1R5z2