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With Ohio’s long-term graduation requirements, you now need to demonstrate readiness as a part of earning your diploma. To do this, you'll need to earn at least two seals, one of which being a state-defined seal. 

The OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal is a state-defined seal. Earning your OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal shows that you have the personal strengths, strong work ethic and professional experience that business and post-secondary institutions need.

General Requirements:

Ohio Revised Code 3313.6112

To earn the OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal, you need to show that you're ready for success in the workplace. To do this, you must work with at least three experienced mentors who validate your skills in school, work or the community.


This is what you need to do to earn your OhioMeansJobs-Readiness seal: 

  1. Demonstrate proficiency in each of 15 identified professional skills;

  2. Use the OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal form to record demonstration of each professional skill; and

  3. Work with a mentor to validate demonstration of each skill across a minimum of two of the three environments. The three potential environments are: 1. School, 2. Work, and 3. Community.


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Students must demonstrate proficiency in each of the following professional skills to meet the requirements of the OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal: 

  • Drug Free - The student commits to being drug free. 

  • Reliability - The student has integrity and responsibility in professional settings. 

  • Work Ethic - The student has effective work habits, personal accountability and a determination to succeed. 

  • Punctuality - The student arrives to commitments on time and ready to contribute. 

  • Discipline - The student abides by guidelines, demonstrates self-control and stays on task. 

  • Teamwork/Collaboration - The student builds collaborative relationships with others and can work as part of a team. 

  • Professionalism - The student demonstrates honesty. He or she dresses and acts appropriately and responsibly. He or she learns from mistakes. 

  • Learning Agility - The student desires to continuously learn new information and skills. 

  • Critical Thinking/Problem-Solving - The student exercises strong decision-making skills, analyzes issues effectively and thinks creatively to overcome problems. 

  • Leadership - The student leverages the strengths of others to achieve common goals. He or she coaches and motivates peers and can prioritize and delegate work. 

  • Creativity/Innovation - The student is original and inventive. He or she communicates new ideas to others, drawing on knowledge from different fields to find solutions. 

  • Oral and Written Communications - The student articulates thoughts and ideas clearly and effectively in written and oral forms. 

  • Digital Technology - The student has an understanding of emerging technology and leverages technology to solve problems, complete tasks and accomplish goals. 

  • Global/Intercultural Fluency - The student values, respects and learns from diverse groups of people. 

Career Management - The student is a self-advocate. He or she articulates strengths, knowledge and experiences relevant to success in a job or postsecondary education.


Students are required to document how they demonstrated each of the 15 professional skills. At least two environments must be reflected among the demonstrated skills. A minimum of three mentors must be involved in the overall validation process and sign the form. Students must choose mentors they worked with, activities they participated in and skills they demonstrated while in high school.

School: The student demonstrates professional skills in a school environment during the school day or during extracurricular activities. School mentors include teachers, school leaders (for example, administrators, advisors, or others) and coaches. These activities are separate from work-based or community-based activities. 

Work: The student demonstrates professional skills in a work environment. Work mentors may include supervisors, hiring managers, experienced co-workers and others. These activities are separate from school-based or community-based activities.

Community: The student demonstrates professional skills in a community environment. Community mentors may include volunteer coordinators, faith-based leaders and others. These activities are separate from school-based or work-based activities.


An extensive OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal Frequently Asked Questions document is available from the Department.

When can students begin earning the OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal? 

Students can begin earning the seal during high school. 


Can students cite previous experience for skill validation? 

Yes, students can cite experiences they had at any point during their high school years. The experience must be validated by a mentor who worked with the student during that time. 


Who validates the student demonstrated the professional skills? 

Mentors validate the student demonstrated the required professional skills. Mentors are experienced and trusted advisors who have worked with students in professional settings during high school. Students must choose three mentors to validate their demonstration of professional skills from at least two of the following environments – school, work or community. 


How many mentors must validate each skill? 

At least one mentor is required to validate each skill. However, a minimum of three mentors must be involved in the overall validation process and are required to sign the form. 


In how many environments must a student display proficiency of a skill? 

Students must demonstrate all 15 skills to earn the OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal. A student is only required to document how he or she demonstrated each skill in a minimum of one environment. The student cannot document all 15 skills in the same environment. At least two environments must be reflected among the demonstrated skills. 


Who at each school is responsible for managing the student process for the OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal? 

Local schools can implement the OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal in the ways that work best for them. Each school should designate a school counselor or administrator to be responsible for verifying completion of the validation form. This person will be referred to as the verifier.


Once a student and his or her mentor complete the validation form, what are the next steps?

Once the student and the mentors complete the form, the verifier will confirm a student has met the OhioMeansJobs-Readiness Seal requirements. The verifier signs the form and records that the student completed the requirements in the student information system. The original form and related documents are filed with the student’s records. A letter of recommendation is an example of a related document.


How were the professional skills identified? 

The Ohio Department of Education, Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation and Ohio Department of Higher Education identified an initial list of professional skills. State partners selected these skills based on reports by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, in partnership with The Conference Board, Partnership for 21st Century Skills, the Society for Human Resource Management and Corporate Voices for Working Families. To better meet the needs of Ohio businesses, state partners surveyed Ohio’s business community to select the most “essential” or “important” skills for workplace success. Through the survey, 230 business leaders identified the 15 skills students must demonstrate to earn the seal. 

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