GODFREY – Lewis and Clark Community College’s Adult Education department is expanding its Building Futures programming to offer three distinct career pathways in Construction, Health Science and, new this January, Information Technology.
“Building Futures YouthBuild is about helping students transition into their career interests after completing their GED,” Building Futures Director Sabrina Davis said. “Transformation looks different for all young people, and we want to make sure that we are providing multiple pathways to help satisfy those needs.”
Building Futures aims to give young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 the opportunity to earn their GED while learning job skills and earning college credit. For youth who have not yet finished high school, Building Futures provides a foundation even for those not specifically interested in the three specific pathways. Staff members work with youth to design a transition to college or work around their individual goals.
The Information Technology schedule is designed so students earn college credits as they apply their learning in a hands-on and fun Digital Leadership curriculum. Graduates will earn 17 college credit hours toward their degree in Computer Networking and will be prepared to take and pass the CompTIA A+ certification.
“All 16- to 24-year-olds that are looking to finish their GED and build a future for themselves would definitely benefit from being a part of the YouthBuild movement,” Davis said. “The new year will be a great opportunity for students to get a fresh start, and Building Futures YouthBuild is the place to begin.”
Building Futures students also gain real-world skills as they give back to the community by completing service projects and earn an education award through AmeriCorps for college or training once they complete their service hours.
Building Futures focuses on youth and helps them to tap into their own leadership skills and career goals, while supporting them along the way with mentoring, tutoring and counseling. To make this full-time commitment possible, students get paid a stipend to attend.
“We find that our students, especially our young adults, learn best when learning is active, and they can apply the skills they learn in the classroom to real world settings,” Associate Dean of Adult Education Val Harris. “We have designed these career pathways with this in mind.”
Construction training includes certification in CPR, First Aid, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA 10), and a nationally recognized Pre-Apprenticeship Certificate.
Health science participants receive certification in CPR/ First Aid and OSHA 10, and have the option to pursue a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) credential or receive training in other health science fields.
“If I didn’t go to YouthBuild, I would still have an average job,” YouthBuild graduate Andrew Ewing said. “In my opinion, if you are considering joining YouthBuild, you should definitely give it a try. As long as you stick to it, you will enjoy it. Stick with it. In the end, it is really worth it.” Ewing graduated with his GED in June 2016 and transitioned into the Welding program at L&C.
The program is currently recruiting participants for the January 2017 cohort. For more information, contact (618) 468-4141 or visit www.lc.edu/youthbuild.