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The Strength of Partnerships

As a young nonprofit, Career Walk's dedicated partnership with Butler County Area Vocational-Technical School has kept them moving forward.

Photo courtesy of Career Walk

Each Monday, Curio412 highlights good news of service and innovation in our communities!

Today we feature Career Walk who is helping students to define their future by providing them with work based learning experiences.

Career Walk received it's nonprofit status in May 2019 and has been growing step by step ever since. But, Career Walk didn't start in 2019. Their Walk the Walk program began in 1996 in Rose Hill, NC, where current Career Walk President, Doug Shirley, served as a middle school counselor. When Doug was tasked with creating a program targeting the at-risk student population, he had no idea that the program's success would lead him to create an effective program for career development within school districts. His Walk the Walk program, which guides at- risk youth to improving behaviors, academic achievement, and develop life-long career skills, partners with local businesses to provide work based learning experiences. Five years ago Doug began planning for Career Walk to serve local school districts through the Walk the Walk program in Western PA.

As a young nonprofit, Career Walk has weathered the challenges of today through maintaining collaborative partnership with the Butler County Area Vocational-Techinical School. When Covid hit, Career Walk had selected students for its inaugural program and were preparing for placement. While Covid has changed the way that this placement will operate, their greatest success is working with a supportive partner dedicated to keeping this program moving forward. Career Walk currently has three students enrolled in the Walk the Walk program and is looking forward to providing them with the best experience possible this year.

Due to Covid, Career Walk plans to make career videos of the trades until the students return to school. These videos will serve current students in the program, a recruitment tool for future students, and as a promotional video for middle school students.

This time has also allowed Career Walk to foster relationships with businesses eager to offer opportunities for career shadowing and future internships or employment. After his success in North Carolina, Doug has big plans to expand the mission of Career Walk into a program that could be implemented to change the lives of at-risk students by providing them with a path to a thriving future.

Give Back

Want to support Career Walk or bring this program to your school? Visit them online:

Curio412 is a consultancy for nonprofits and businesses who want to make a BIG impact, reap the benefits of a tight-knit team, and attract recognition to their organizations by developing systems that reflect your values and goals. We believe what you do makes a difference. Which is why we started our e-zine - to tell your story so you can be known for the good that you do.

Have a story of service and innovation from your organization that you would like to share? Email me at to be featured.

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