What is Exploring?
Exploring is Learning for Life’s career education program for young men and women who are at least 14 (and have completed the eighth grade) or 15 years of age but not yet 21 years old. Adults are selected by the participating organization for involvement in the program. Color, race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, ethnic background, economic status, and citizenship are not criteria for participation.
Exploring’s purpose is to provide experiences to help young people mature and to prepare them to become responsible and caring adults. Explorers are ready to investigate the meaning of interdependence in their personal relationships and communities.
Exploring is based on a unique and dynamic relationship between youth and the organizations in their communities. Local community organizations initiate an Explorer post by matching their people and program resources to the interests of young people in the community. The result is a program of activities that helps youth pursue their special interests, grow, and develop.
Explorer posts can specialize in a variety of career skills. Exploring programs are based on five areas of emphasis: career opportunities, life skills, citizenship, character education, and leadership experience.
- Mission: Deliver character-building experiences and mentorship that allow youth to achieve their full potential in both life and work.
- Vision: Shape the workforce of tomorrow by engaging and mentoring today's youth in career and life-enhancing opportunities.
- Promise: Bring businesses and community leaders together to help young people reach their full potential.
HISTORY OF EXPLORING
In 1998, Exploring functioned as a career education program and was subsequently shifted to fall under the Learning for Life program umbrella. In early 2013, after 18 months of piloting the program in 17 local councils, Learning for Life obtained official approval to start the Explorer Club program for sixth- through eighth-graders. The Explorer Club program was created in response to the U.S. Department of Education’s recent emphasis on career education at the elementary grade levels.