North Central Career Academy helps teenagers

It gives our area’s young folks a head start on planning for future success

The North Central Career Academy, located in Eagle Grove at 216 S. Park Ave. — the old Iowa National Guard Armory, is an innovative undertaking designed to give high school students a head start on preparing for a successful work life.

Launched by Iowa Central Community College in 2014, the academy provides high school juniors and seniors the chance to earn college credits through programs called pathways. The pathways adopted were developed by ICCC leaders after meeting with area businesses to see what types of jobs were in demand. Six pathways are currently offered — business, engineering, liberal arts, welding, machinist and education.

Six area high schools have partnered with Iowa Central on this exciting project. They are Clarion-Goldfield-Dows, Eagle Grove, Humboldt, Fort Dodge Senior High, St. Edmond Catholic School and Webster City.

When high school students reach their junior year they can choose to enroll in one pathway per year. The students travel to Eagle Grove from 8:20 a.m. to 11:10 a.m. each day. The classes they take are specific to the pathway they select.

This program is a huge benefit to the students who decide to participate. It is also a tremendous bargain since there is no financial outlay by them or their parents for tuition, books or transportation costs. Those who successfully complete the classes earn credits that can be used at Iowa Central and many other colleges.

Perhaps most importantly, students who take advantage of the Career Academy have the ability to explore their work options at an earlier age than might otherwise be possible. For some this may start them on the road to satisfying and rewarding adult employment. Even if the skills they learn don’t turn out to be precisely applicable to the profession they ultimately choose, the learning experience itself is enriching and broadens their knowledge of work-life possibilities.

The Daily Freeman-Journal applauds this impressive program. We urge area teenagers and their parents to check out what the North Central Career Academy has to offer. For many young folks enrolling may be an attractive choice.

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