NCDA Promotes Literacy through the 51st Annual Poetry Poster Contest

By Leann Morgan

National Career Development Week is November 14-18, 2016
National Career Development Day is November 16, 2016

This year, the National Career Development Association (NCDA) will continue to promote career exploration and discovery through its annual celebration of National Career Development Month. In conjunction with this annual celebration, NCDA sponsors an annual Poetry and Poster Contest. This is an excellent opportunity to promote literacy and careers among K-12 students and adults alike. Click here to download the rules for the  51st Annual Poetry Poster Contest. The theme is  "The Joy of Work: Positive Approaches to Work, Career & Life!"

Engaging in Career Development ActivitiesAbigail Layne

“The NCD Month Poetry and Poster Contest provides an opportunity for K-12 students to explore their perceptions and emotions regarding their future, while advancing their writing competency and encouraging creativity,” the Tennessee State Coordinator, Arden Szepe, stated. “It helps to create a dialog between kids and the adults in their lives about what they are interested in and what makes them tick.”

Many school counselors work with their local district and community partners to promote the contest and encourage participation. Students who normally wouldn’t engage in career development activities, find the opportunity to showcase their poems or artwork an intriguing notion.

“It’s a wonderful way for kids to express how they feel about life and how they view themselves in relation to work,” added Leann Morgan, a former high school counselor and NCD Month Committee Chair, “It is one way for NCDA to connect directly with K-12 school counselors and encourage them to become members. It’s encouraging them to see the value in the resources NCDA provides and how we can support the work they do in the schools.”The Poetry and Poster Contest is just one way we celebrate National Career Development Month, but it also serves to enhance the relationship career counselors have with local partners.


Joint Mission to Promote Literacy and Career Development

This year, the NCD Month Committee is working with the American Library Association to get the word out about the contest in an effort to engage larger numbers of kids and adults in the process of career exploration and development. Your local library is an amazing place to find job search and industry materials, while connecting with career professionals who can help with interviewing and resume writing needs. According to Meagan Kittrick, Career Counselor at Cuyahoga County Public Library in Ohio, “Libraries have been providing career counseling information and support for years, and with funding support from the “Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014,” (which provides funding to promote adult education and literacy), some libraries have become a one-stop shop for workforce and career information and resources.” The American Library Association helped spread the word about the Poetry and Poster Contest this year through their monthly newsletter, which was sent electronically to all 60,000+ members. We hope to expanding our partnership to include more sponsored contests within local library branches for the 2018 contest. The benefits of this type of partnership are numerous, but most notably is the inclusive nature of the library system and the ability to reach K-12 students and adults of all ages in the joint mission of promoting literacy and career development.

The Contest and More Ways to Celebrate
As in past years, the 2017 NCD Month Poetry and Poster Contest is set up for participants to compete in one of six divisions:

  • Primary: Grades K – 2,
  • Intermediate: Grades 3 – 5,
  • Middle: Grades 6 – 8,
  • Senior: Grades 9 – 12,
  • Adult: Student 18 and older enrolled in school,
  • Open: Adult 18 and older not enrolled in school (student teachers, parents, and other professionals).

Kendrick MartinezThe winning entries for each division will be recognized and displayed on the NCDA website, www.ncda.org, beginning in April, 2017, as well as at the annual NCDA Global Career Development Conference to be held in Orlando, FL, June 30-July 2, 2017. National winners will also receive from the National Career Development Association, a special certificate and a congratulatory gift.

In addition to the contest, NCDA offers a webinar on National Career Development Day, November 16, 2016, Register now for "Maximize Your Strengths to Thrive in Your Professional LIfe"" presented by Cori Shaff, M.Ed. Also, state career development associations may be planning their own celebrations. Visit their websites by seeing the links on the NCDA State Divisions page. If your organization is celebrating NCD Month, share the details with us in the Comments area below.

For more information, please visit the NCD Month webpage. It includes Resources for celebrating and links to past winners. Or contact the NCD Month Committee Chair, Leann Morgan at NCDmonth@ncda.org

 NCD Month Logo




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