The purpose of the Ohio Career Development Association is to promote a greater understanding of the meaning of work and vocation, to foster career development over the life span, and to improve the standards of professional service in the field of career guidance and counseling in Ohio.
The Ohio Career Development Association (OCDA) was founded in 1975 and is a division of the Ohio Counseling Association (OCA) and a strong state division of the National Career Development Association (NCDA), which was founded in 1913. NCDA is a division of the American Counseling Association (ACA).
Up until the year 2005, OCDA offered two conferences each year. During the economic downturn, OCDA partnered with AARP to provide career coaching. Over the years, OCDA has instituted awards to recognize career leaders in Ohio and outstanding students in career. During the 2010-2011 year, four award categories and their criteria were created to recognize OCDA members for their accomplishments. These awards included the OCDA Career Leadership Award, the OCDA Career Service Award, the OCDA Distinguished Career Merit Award, and the OCDA Exemplary Career Legislative Award. In 2018, the awards were reduced to a total of three, and the names were changed. 2014 was the year in which new bylaws were established. In 2015, OCDA started offering member generated webinars. The year 2017 brought the start of committees which provided members with the opportunity to become more involved in OCDA. Prior to 2018, there were no in-person presentations hosted by OCDA at the mid-year meeting executive board meeting or during National Career Development Month. This changed in 2019 when two presentations were hosted during National Career Development Month, and one speaker presented at the mid-year executive board meeting.