Career exploration for Otter Tail County students

Ottertale County Offers Career Exploration Opportunities for High School Students

January 20, 2023 – Ottertale County, Minnesota – More than 150 students around Ottertale County have had the opportunity to explore future careers in in-demand industries. The Otter Tail County Youth Workforce Navigation Program organized field trips to 11 companies representing the agriculture, automotive, healthcare and manufacturing industries from October to January. Students from Perham, New York Mills, Henning, Fergus Falls, Underwood, Parkers Prairie, Ashby, and Rothsay High Schools took field trips to learn more about career paths in these industries.

The purpose of the field trip was to show students interested in these industries that there are still some unknown options. These opportunities are available in Ottertail County. For example, an automotive field trip took students through service and maintenance, sales, body repair and restoration, fleet management, and commercial driver’s license (CDL) pathways. Medical field trips took students through pathways such as surgery, emergency services, long-term and memory care, nutritional services, and medical information technology (IT). The excursion is offered to her students ages 16 and older and made possible in part by a Youth Skills Training Grant Ottertail County received from the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry.

Otter Tail County partnered with Amy Johnson of Cardinal Consulting Solutions to act as program manager for the Youth Workforce Navigation Program and organize field trips. Johnson describes her experience participating in her field trips: Regardless of the industry, the moment is the reward for this work. The value of young people with a clear career path is immeasurable. Finding this spark will affect their journeys, workforce and even retain their economic impact. It is limitless and would not be possible without these career exposure and experience opportunities. ”

The Youth Workforce Navigation Program is building Otter Tail County’s future workforce and bridging the relationship between schools and businesses. More field trips are planned for the future. Companies interested in engaging students through business tours, classroom presentations, or internships can enroll in the K12 Navigator online tool. Schools in Ottertail County are looking for companies to use the K12 Navigator tool to provide students with a career exploration experience.

Otter Tail County encourages employers of all sizes and industries to register their companies with K12 Navigator at For more information about K12 Navigator and the Youth Workforce Navigation Program, please contact Amy Johnson. [email protected].

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