On-Campus Career Programs for Rural High School Students are Made Possible through Community Partnerships

ROSEBURG, Ore., July 14, 2022 – High school students in Douglas County can soon earn college credit and sample a career of their choosing with Umpqua Community College’s new Friday Career Academy program set to launch this fall. Community partnerships, including the local school districts, $491,996 in grant money to be distributed over three years from The Ford Family Foundation, and additional support from the Oregon Strategic Innovation Grant, will enable UCC to make this program available to students.

The Friday Career Academy is set to offer three unique curriculum programs that will give students the opportunity to spend all day on Fridays on-campus at UCC. Depending on their interests, participants can either get a jumpstart on high-demand automotive and medical industry jobs or explore their passion for the arts. Current program offerings include Automotive, Emergency Medical Technician and Theatre.

Many schools in Douglas County have a 4-day school week with Fridays off. This gives an opportunity for youth to engage early in college education and get a jumpstart on a career. In addition, the program will also be open to students who usually have school on Fridays. Area high schools have agreed to work with students to incorporate these programs into their planned schedules.

“South Umpqua School District is excited to partner with UCC to provide our students this unique opportunity to explore careers, and even earn certification in a field of interest by the time they graduate high school,” said South Umpqua School District Superintendent, Kate McLaughlin.

According to research by Education Northwest, students who participate in accelerated learning opportunities, like dual enrollment, are more likely to graduate from high school as well as succeed in college.

“This program is a real win-win for students and our community,” said UCC President Rachel Pokrandt. “We are so excited about the opportunities for all that this partnership will bring. It will give our local high schoolers – many of whom reside in rural areas – a solid bridge to steady employment or a step toward a college path.”

Automotive program students can get hands-on instruction within UCC’s state-of-the-art auto shop, earning industry-recognized certificates to pave their way to full-time employment.

The Emergency Medical Technician program will provide training for aspiring first responders; students can train with local professionals and participate in UCC’s real-life simulation labs.

Those interested in theatre arts can explore scripting, acting, directing and stage designing through participation in contemporary plays, Shakespearean monologue, and modern comedy.
For more on the program, visit the Career Academy website. Students interested in the program should speak with their high school guidance counselor.

About Umpqua Community College

Nestled in the beautiful North Umpqua River Valley, Umpqua Community College is the regional center for higher education in Douglas County, Oregon. UCC provides high quality college degree programs, workforce development, and community learning opportunities.

About The Ford Family Foundation

The Ford Family Foundation was established in 1957 by Kenneth W. and Hallie E. Ford. Its mission is “successful citizens and vital rural communities” in Oregon and Siskiyou County, California. The Foundation is located in Roseburg, Oregon, with a Scholarship office in Eugene.

Contact

Suzi Pritchard
Communications & Marketing Director
Umpqua Community College
Phone: (541) 440-7658
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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