Harry T. Smith, professor of curriculum and instruction at Tennessee Tech University, conducts several interviews with employers asking this specific question and puts the answers and much more information in his textbook, From School to Work, just released in its fifth edition.
Targeted for 11th and 12th graders, From School to Work (Goodheart-Willcox, 2000) is designed to help students make smooth transitions from their classrooms to meaningful jobs. The text stresses skills they need to succeed at school, work and on their own, from issues of personal hygiene to math and computer skills to managing finances and establishing good credit.
In this new edition, computer and Internet skills are discussed in-depth with numerous website addresses included to help high school and vocational students learn to search for jobs and post their resumes on the Web. "We even have activities in the book centered around websites. And we discuss how to apply for a job using the Internet," he says.
There is also a chapter on diversity and rights in the workplace and the textbook even addresses the right kind of attitude to have when seeking a job. There are case studies at the end of many chapters, some based on actual work-related experience, that give students a practical example of how to use what they learn from the book into the real world.His co-author is James Lorenz, professor of vocational/technical education at Middle Tennessee State University. The two drew heavily on three previous editions of the text by the late J.J. Littrell, a former faculty member at Arizona State University, who is credited as co-author.