Centra Foundation and Centra Credit Union presented a grant of $1,000 to Greater Clark County Schools in June to celebrate the Grand Opening of Centra’s new Ridge River branch in Jeffersonville. The grant was awarded to support the College and Career Readiness initiative and the newly created Educator Externship program. Travis Haire, Assistant Superintendent, accepted the grant check. He is pictured with Centra Credit Union representatives, Chris Bottorff and Christie Lee.
The College and Career Readiness initiative was created to ensure that every student has the skills they need to succeed in a post-secondary setting. Understanding how to dress and interact in the college and work environment is as important as academic skills. A College and Career Center has been established at each of the three high schools. Programs available include; job shadowing, internships, work experience and worksite tours. Students have four career pathways to explore:
- Business, IT and Logistics
- Health and Related Sciences
- Human Services, Education, Law and the Arts
- Engineering, Manufacturing, Technology and Skilled Trades
Centra’s funding was used to support the newly created Educator Externship program. The program was designed for teachers to learn firsthand the needs of local businesses and gain a better understanding of how to better prepare students for college and career success. Teachers receive a stipend for dedicating a week from their summer vacation to participate in the program.
Jason Graves, Social Studies teacher at New Washington Middle/High School, spent a week at IU – Southeast in the Admission’s office. He reported that the experience opened a treasure trove of information. Jason is involved in the helping New Washington seniors prepare for college. The externship provided insights on the selection process used by the university when reviewing applications made by high school students. Jason now feels well prepared to answer questions posed by students and parents. He was also able to provide information to the Admissions Office of which they were unaware about housing needs and the food needs of high students involved in the Free and Reduced lunch program.
Teachers in elementary and middle schools are also eligible to apply for the Externship program. Courtlon Peters, fourth grade teacher at Maple Elementary SchooI, worked with Jeffersonville Stormwater, and other departments within Jeffersonville City Hall. Courtlon also had high praise for the Externship program and will be incorporating his experiences into his classroom curriculum.