Connecting the dots

New DCPSS tool aims to help students find paths to success

Douglas County Partners for Student Success is working to create several resources to support students in their efforts to plan for successful futures after high school.

One of the tools we’ve developed as part of our Bright Futures Umpqua initiative includes a website intended to help guide students, families, educators and local business partners toward collaborative opportunities. The site can be found at

We want this website to serve as Douglas County’s toolkit for students planning for life after high school. These tools steer students toward the information they need about career paths and post-secondary education opportunities, while providing resources for parents, educators and industry leaders to help every student succeed.

“We want this to be a one-stop-shop for students to find the resources and information they need to choose a path for their future,” said Gwen Soderberg-Chase, DCPSS director. “There is a lot of information available to support students, and we hope this website will serve as an umbrella for all of the various tools that exist out there.”

The site is a work in progress, and several of our partners are collaborating with students to test it out. Students are encouraged to explore college and degree programs while also being exposed to possible career opportunities available directly out of high school or through trade and certification programs.

We’ve compiled a wide range of informative websites and categorized them according to timelines for students who are just starting their search for future paths, to students who are ready to dive into immersive experiences, such as internships. Career-related categories focus on career awareness, exploration, preparation, and training, skills and education. Education resources start at the exploration and research level and lead to financial aid opportunities and college applications.

 The site also features a number of videos that highlight local students and businesses, including past “virtual field trips” that have been offered locally through Oregon Connections.

“Educators and families are realizing now more than ever that there is no one-size-fits-all option for students graduating from high school,” Soderberg-Chase said. “We’re learning that what matters is that students find a field that interests them enough to pursue their passions and find success, whether that involves seeking a college degree or entering a high-demand trade.”

The site’s blog is an easy way to check up on the latest local activities and programs geared toward college exploration or career-connected learning. We’re also working to maintain a robust calendar of education and career-related activities.

We encourage you to take some time to visit the site and share your feedback. If you have ideas on additional resources to include, we would love to hear them! Please email us at

Leave a Reply