Students searching for career information online are often led to overwhelming, overly complicated websites. Career Village's mission is to "create a cloud-based solution for career advice" in order to help young adults find the most reliable information about careers from the people currently living out those jobs and careers. The mission page of the site summarizes its objectives this way: "Traditionally, youth get career advice within their communities—parents, teachers, and near-peers. We have seen how the limitations of this network approach plays out in low-income communities. This is a huge global problem. With global youth unemployment at record levels, being unable to find the answers to important questions about careers makes it nearly impossible to chart your path to gainful employment."
The premise of this website is simple: students with career questions can ask them on the site, and professionals from that specific field will answer them in a short amount of time. Also available on this site are questions about college and career readiness skills, as well as vocational learning programs and newly developed career information. This is a one-stop shop for any students wanting more information about what to do post-high school. Registration on the site is free and not required to access the crowdsourcing benefits; however, registration is recommended to receive email updates and notifications.
Students frequently have specific questions regarding their future career options, yet there is limited, coherent information readily available for them online. Career Village is a great solution, allowing students to visit and post any question they are curious about. After a question is posed, a new discussion thread is generated, categorized with searchable tags, and within a few days multiple answers will appear under the same thread. Those posting responses also have the ability to provide useful links and resources for further investigation.
Another key element of this site is the "To Do List" tab. Located on the main page, this tab allows students to post lists of their specific college or career goals. Through the magic of crowdsourcing, users will then be able to post steps to help them attain those goals, providing a helpful to-do list for future reference. For example, a student could post a goal to "have a career that addresses children and poverty." Under this post other users could submit steps to help the student obtain this goal, perhaps by providing links to specific academic journal articles or by listing local homeless shelters to contact for tutoring or internship opportunities. There is also a geography search filter that helps narrow searches for those who specifically want information relevant to their local state or community.
In addition, a variety of scholarship opportunities are provided, as well as detailed information on the scholarships and their timelines. Guidance counselors, teachers, and school library media specialists could utilize this resource to post financial aid and scholarship information on school websites, as well as part of college and career preparation lessons.