Career Resources


The Minnesota Career Information System (MCIS) is an online resource for students to research interests, careers, colleges, and scholarships. Students are encouraged to use MCIS throughout their four years at Southwest Christian to:

  • Learn about different occupations
  • Develop a personal portfolio
  • Research colleges, universities, and career schools
  • Find scholarships and financial aid
  • Improve job search skills and create resume


Tabs in MCIS

  • PLAN > Create career and course plans
  • ASSESSMENT > Take inventories to find out learning styles and interests. All students will complete MCIS inventories throughout their four years at Southwest Christian High School. However, each inventory can be taken more than once.
  • OCCUPATIONS >Research different career fields and specific jobs using the results of inventories in the assessments tab.
    1. Search different two-year, four-year, and technical colleges based on career interest, location, and more.
    2. Track school applications to keep well organized during the college search.
    3. Learn how to start saving and paying for college.
    4. Complete scholarship searches.
  • EMPLOYMENT > Complete a resume, search for jobs, learn about self-employment, and prepare yourself to be successful in a job
  • MY PORTFOLIO > Create a career plan, track your college applications, create a personal learning plan, and take free test prep and practice tests for the ACT, SAT, PSAT, etc.


How do I choose a college?

- How do you want to grow and change in the next few years? What kind of environment would stimulate the growth that you would like to see?

- What degree of academic rigor is best for you? Do you want an academic program where you must work and think hard, or one where you can make respectable grades without getting stressed out? How important is it for you to perform at the top of your class? How well do you respond to academic pressure and competition from others?

- What interests do you want to pursue in college? Do your interests require any special facilities, programs, or opportunities? How competitive will it be in order for you to be involved? How important is it for you to be able to nurture these interests, participate or compete at the college level?

- How would you enjoy living in a different part of the country? How often do you want to be able to go home?
What kinds of surroundings are important to your well-being? Are there certain places, activities, environments, weather, or pace of life that make you happy?

- Do you enjoy being a part of large groups of people or do you need a more personal environment?

- How important are the opinions of your parents, teachers, and friends in choosing a college? How important are the factors of college prestige or reputation?

- How important are costs when looking at colleges? Have you and your parents talked about how your college education will be financed? How important will financial aid and/or merit scholarships be in choosing where you might go to school?

Should I consider a 2-year school or community college?

Most two-year colleges are public and offer a less expensive and more convenient option for students wanting to receive a college education. Though two-year colleges offer associate degrees, many students start their post-secondary education at a two-year college and then transfer to a four-year college or university. Many four-year colleges accept community college credit though it is always best to check to see if specific coursework will transfer between institutions. Some examples of community colleges in Minnesota are Normandale Community College (Bloomington) and Minneapolis Community and Technical College (Minneapolis)

What is the difference between technical or trade schools?

These schools offer training for a specific occupation and usually do not offer general or “liberal arts” coursework such as English, social studies, or the humanities, etc. These schools can be public or private, and coursework can usually be completed within two years or less. The difference between technical schools and trade schools is that technical schools teach the science behind the occupation, while trade schools generally focus on the more hands on skills needed to do the job. Some examples of technical, trade, and specialty schools in Minnesota are Dunwoody College of Technology in Minneapolis, Aveda Institute of Minneapolis, and Hennepin Technical College in Eden Prairie.

More detailed information on college planning can be found on our College Resources page linked here.