Setting high expectations early in life is an important step in order for youth to develop the skills to succeed in the future. Work-based learning is one way youth can identify interests, strengths, skills, and needs related to career development. A hands-on experience in a real setting, work-based learning includes a broad range of opportunities including short-term introductory activities such as job shadowing, informational interviews, and workplace tours, as well as more long-term and intensive training including workplace mentoring, apprenticeships, and paid employment. Volunteer work, service learning, and activities at a student's school site can also provide rich, work-based learning opportunities. Potential benefits of work-based learning for youth while they are still in school include:
identification of career interests, skills, and abilities; exposure to job requirements and responsibilities, employer expectations, workplace etiquette, and workplace dynamics; development of critical workplace skills and a solid foundation for good work habits; improvement of postschool outcomes; and selection of appropriate courses of study tied to career goals.