CLAOC Career Exploration Experience

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Collaborating to Cultivate OC into a Premier, Inclusive, Innovation Talent Hub

The Career Exploration Experience provides students with the opportunity to explore careers, develop new technical skills, gain practical work experience, and refine their professional skills as they work in small teams to complete one or more specific micro-projects of value to their host company, typically 24 – 32 hours in duration.

In the year of 2021, CLAOC partnered with 7 local businesses and 5 school districts and nonprofit partners to provide a Career Exploration Experience for over 125 students. 3 out of 4 Students reported they plan to pursue a career that relates to their internship field. See our program recap here

Businesses in Partnership

  • CHOC
  • EY
  • Medtronic
  • Pacific Dental Services
  • Tangram Interiors 
  • University of California, Irvine
  • Ware Malcomb

School Districts and Nonprofit Partnerships

  • Anaheim Union High School District
  • Breakthrough San Juan Capistrano 
  • Samueli Academy
  • Simon Scholars
  • Tustin Unified School District


Hear what Tustin Unified School District students had to say about CEE

Brooke, Tustin Unified School District

CHOC Children’s

“As the internship is coming to a close, I believe I was able to meet my goals and better my skills and myself as a whole.” 

My internship with CHOC has been very valuable, as we have met with a variety of different people who taught us all so much. We had presenters talk to us about their careers and how they get to where they are, and other presentations on the power of skills like mindfulness and  resilience. I am in the finance department and have been working on a presentation about my findings within finance and CHOC’s financial team.  

My two supervisors have been very supportive and the communication has been good as we have daily check-in’s to go over anything if need be. Going into this internship, my goals were to immerse myself into professional settings and learn how to handle different situations as well as improve my overall communication skills. All in all, the whole experience has been amazing and they have truly made us feel that we are a part of the CHOC team. 



Nadeen, Tustin Unified School District CHOC Children’s  

“I am grateful to everyone that has helped me along the way, and I am really proud of myself for the tasks I have accomplished.” 

After a busy orientation week at CHOC, we were assigned to different departments. I was assigned to the Patient and Family Experience department and it has been immensely rewarding. At first, I thought this internship would be me shadowing others and only learning visually without much direct experience.  

However, we were given the significant task of helping form a teen advisory council. With the support of the very kind and knowledgeable Patient and Family Experience team, we were able to successfully create a presentation pertaining to this goal. I have learned so many valuable skills from this experience.  



Eric, Tustin Unified School District


“I learned a lot about the world of consulting and how it is centered around aiding clients in improving their business.”

My internship with Ernst & Young has been extremely insightful by showing what work EY professionals conduct.  The mentoring meetings each taught me something new from the importance of work-life balance to navigating one’s career path and preparing oneself for recruitment. 

Outside of the mentoring meetings, I worked with my team to complete and present the digital divide project which assessed the digital divide in our community to better understand it and think of ways to combat it.  This experience revealed to me how access to digital resources impacts a student’s learning experience.  Overall, this internship has underscored the importance of communication, professionalism, hard work, and networking. 



Jacqueline, Tustin Unified School District

Pacific Dental Services

“I felt like I definitely learned a lot about the company but also about myself and what roles I would like to go into that match with my skills and  interests.”

Interning at Pacific Dental Services was a very enjoyable experience for me. Going into the internship I thought it would be a lot more challenging and difficult for me to keep up with the work assigned and that my teammates and I would have a hard time communicating with each other when it came to working on group projects. However, as the internship progressed I felt a lot of support from our supervisors; Taylor especially because she always made herself available to us and our repetitive questions.  

I also felt a lot of support and encouragement from the guest  speakers that came to speak to us about different departments they worked in and their jobs and responsibilities. My teammates and I also had an easy time communicating after making a group chat together on IMessages, where we divided up work, set scheduled times to practice presentations and let each other know any information we may have missed. I believe I gained a lot of knowledge from this experience and my supervisors and guest speakers definitely noticed this as well because after asking me to stay after class, they mentioned that they could tell I was paying attention by my specific questions and comments I made along with their presentation.