Participate in WBL Activities

General Work-Based
Learning Questions
Phone: (619) 388-2701

Katlin Choi
Work-Based Learning Coordinator
Phone: (619) 388-2734

Shawn Fawcett
Work-Based Learning Coordinator
Phone: (619) 388-2340

Pavel Consuegra
Internship Coordinator
Phone: (619) 388-5072

Melanie Baeza-McCray
Employment Engagement Coordinator
Phone: (619) 388-2701

Work-Based Learning 

st        fac        emp

work-based learning glossary & examples:

Career Awareness & Exploration:

Career Awareness & Exploration experiences allow students to create awareness of career opportunities across a broad spectrum of industries. Students exposure to industries and specific occupations allows them to narrow  down based on their individual interests, values, and personality. As students reflect on their unique talents, they discover a more refined list of occupations based on their personal interests and skills. These activities provide the student with direct interaction with industry professionals and          workplace settings. By gaining deeper access and knowledge of occupations, students are able to understand desired qualifications for a specific industry and are able to make an informed decision to pursue a specific career path (Linked Learning, 2012).

Guest Speaker - Speakers visit campus for an in-class or panel event to share information about their industry, current position, educational experiences, and career advise to inform students of career paths.

  • Mesa Highlight: The Career Center hosted a "Careers in Humanities Panel" event showcasing various career paths available to students pursuing Humanities majors. Students had the opportunity to ask questions about positions, required training, knowledge and skills, typical work day, what they like about the job, etc.

Workplace Tour - Students tour facilites to observe daily activities, learn about company services, be introduced to potential career opportunities, and gain exposure to requirements of the workplace. 

  • Mesa Highlight: STEM Community Scholars, in partnership with SD Foundation, offered off-campus bus trips during the semester to introduce and increase underrepresented students in STEM careers. Companies include: Cleveland National Forest, Scripps Institute, Municipal Water District, Inova Diagnostics, etc. 

Informational Interview - Student prepares questions in advance to ask business partner about his current position, education experience, training, career advice, etc. May be by telephone, video conference, or in person.

  • Mesa Highlight: Students in the Architecture Design program complete an informational interview assignment in ARCH 226 where they meet with an architect, learn about their work, and compare his/her design style to a famous architect.  

Job Shadow - Business partners introduce students to what a "real job" is like,  how to apply skills they've learned, teach them about various positions, and introduce expectations of the workplace. 

  • Mesa Highlight: Students admitted to the Dental Assisting program are exposed to different careers within DENA 50 prior to starting the program. Students shadow a dental office to experience the work environment of a Dental Assistant.

Hands-On Projects - Student participates in a student-run enterprise or service learning project to provide real-world experiences. Project allows students to apply classroom learning with regular partner interactions. 

  • Mesa Highlight: Students pursuing Business Administration complete a project in BUSE 119 where each student researches an international company, learns about the culture, and explains how they would interact in a business setting with this company. Students give a training presentation to industry professionals for feedback. 

employment readiness:

The Employment Readiness phase is marked by deeper and more profound connections with  industry professionals over an extended period of time. These activities integrate academic learning in the classroom with applied competences learned in the workplace. Emphasis is placed on reflection and developing transferable skills such as communication, teamwork, and critical thinking (Linked Learning, 2012).   

Career Workshops - Student participates in a variety of workshops to prepare for employment. 

  • Mesa Highlight: Student attend Career Workshops to learn how to write a resume, prepare for an interview, develop a professional brand, and grow 21st Century skills to standout in the labor market. 

Portfolium - Portfolium is a free online portfolio to showcase your educational, professional, and personal work and projects with friends, professors, and employers. Put your hard work on display to get recognized for your unique talent.

  • Mesa Highlight: Student attend workshops to learn about the capabilities, benefits, and how to showcase work with Portfolium. 

career PREPARATION & training:

Students enter the Career Preparation & Training phase to solidify career choices and prepare for employment within a specific occupation. Their experiences allow for direct, two-way interaction with industry professionals and results in providing valuable work that promotes the company’s goals. The training lasts until the student masters technical and career-readiness skills, including certifications, in order to be competitive within the labor market. Activities always connect back to classroom learning and push student to consider future career options (Linked Learning, 2012).  

Internship - Student performs a job or completes projects under direct supervision and evaluation by an adult in the host organization. As an intern, a student will participate in shadowing, learning on the job, and complete departmental tasks.

  • Mesa Highlight: A student in the Fashion Design program secured an internship with Fashion Week San Diego. The student had the technical skills to contribute creatively to design, communicate with clients, and advertise events through social media.

Work Experience - On-the-job training over an extended period of time that is required for credential or entry to occupation. Student develops mastery of occupation skills and has regular partner interaction. May be apprenticeship, directed clinical experience, or work experience.

  • Mesa Highlight: A student studying Geographic Information Systems (GIS) interned with CALFIRE and was tasked with editing fire and emergency evacuation maps for San Diego County. With knowledge and skills learned in his GIS program, the student is also helping to produce map books that first responders use during wildfire events. Work Experience is the academic support of internships that allows students to earn college credit while gaining real-world experiences. 


Follow the WBL Team @SDMesaWBL for career updates and information about WBL activities at Mesa College!

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