PRESS RELEASE - April 7, 2014
Anson County Schools has been named one of only 24 recipients in the United States of the competitive and coveted Youth CareerConnect Grant. Only 18 states received one of the awards, and Anson County was the only grant recipient in North Carolina. The school system will receive up to $2,247, 373 over a four year period, beginning with the upcoming 2014-15 school year.
This grant funding will enable Anson County Schools to initiate a “Career-Connect: STEM Academy” at Anson High School, the only comprehensive high school in the district. The Anson High School program will provide opportunity for participating students to focus their high school studies in four highly skilled and in-demand career areas: Advanced Manufacturing, Pre-Engineering, Information Tech-nologies, and Pre-Med and Biomedical Sciences. In the first year, there will be only 20 student seats available in each career area for a total of 80 Freshmen in the program. Then each subsequent year, an additional 80 entering freshmen will be added, for a total of 320 students at the end of four years.
The Youth CareerConnect Grant is a part of President Obama’s major High School Redesign Initiative. The intent is to help students develop knowledge and skills in high school that will prepare them to successfully complete a college degree or immediately enter the workforce after graduation. To accomplish this, the Anson High plan is to provide an innovative setting for students who have an idea that they will become engineers, doctors or nurses, computer specialists, web designers, plant or medical lab technicians, or dozens of other potential careers in the four STEM areas. Career-Connect students will be immersed in a career-based environment that emphasizes real world learning, problem solving, and teaming. They will also make connections to business partners, work briefly in the career industry, and earn college credits that result in a credential that leads to a college degree or employment. Students will have the opportunity to graduate from high school with at least 18 hours of community college credit and one or more certificates recognized nationally by business and industry.
Five excellent business partners have helped design the Anson program, and they will actively participate in helping students and teachers foster success in the real-world career areas. Those partners are: South Piedmont Community College, Anson County Chamber of Commerce, Carolinas Healthcare System, Columbus McKinnon, Hornwood, and Schaeffler USA.
Superintendent Michael Freeman expressed great anticipation for the impact this grant-funded program will have. “This is an important step in our vision for high school education in Anson County,” said Freeman, “and we are truly excited about the opportunities this funding and design will open up for our students. We anticipate that our graduates will be in-demand after graduation, fully ready to continue studying in college or enter the workplace, with national credentials that make them highly marketable. ”
The school district and Anson High School will release more information about this new program over the next few weeks. Superintendent Freeman stated that information will be posted on the school website and the Anson Career-Connect Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ahscareerconnect .
For additional information related to this grant initiative, please contact Michael H. Freeman, Anson County Schools Superintendent, at 704-694-4417 or email@example.com.
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