In McDowell County, West Virginia, there are virtually no opportunities for gainful employment for many, particularly those young adults with no marketable job skills.
That’s why Americans Helping Americans® supports a tutoring program offered at the county’s Career & Technology Center (CTC) by our partner there, Big Creek People in Action (BCPIA), to change the lives of motivated high school students who need little more than guidance and assistance in pursuit of their dream.
The main objective of the Career and Technical Education (CTE) program at the CTC is to fully prepare students for an entry-level job in a career field, military service, or enrollment into higher education programs, says BCPIA co-executive director Dyanne Spriggs.
Among the areas of study offered at the CTC are agriculture, business, firefighting, masonry, culinary arts, health sciences, drafting and woodworking, automotive services, carpentry, law and justice, public safety, EMT, cosmetology, child care, advanced manufacturing and welding and technology and design.
“CTE programs require demonstration of competency in both project-based and academic curriculum,” she explained. “Students with inadequate basic academic skills are hindered from achieving optimal success in a chosen program.”
What this means is that students who fell behind in their elementary, middle and high school classes – but are determined to do what it takes to earn their diploma and gain the employment skills they’ll need not to just get a job after graduation but to enter the career field of their choice – now have that opportunity.
“Our vocational tutor helps students pass the tests that are required for them to be certified in their vocational field,” said Dyanne, which includes NOCTI (National Occupational Competency Testing Institute) and OSHA-10 (Occupational Safety and Health Administration testing).
The vocational school serves all high school students who want to participate in the CTE program, and “there are no other tutors at the CTC but ours,” Dyanne points out. Currently, BCPIA’s program tutors about 150 students there.
Thanks to the supporters of Americans Helping Americans® we have been able to provide grant funding to pay for the tutors and for any educational resources needed by the program.
“The vocational school principal values our program because students receive individual help to improve their basic academic skills and pass tests that are required for them to be certified in their chosen field,” she told us.
“CTE-based skills tutoring methods are unique in that students are engaged in meaningful, relevant academic tutoring that relates to real-world situations.
“Research shows that when academics and technical material is taught simultaneously, students have tremendous success because these core subjects are being learned from the perspective of the student’s area of interest.”
In addition, in Gainesville, Georgia, our partner there, LAMP Ministries, offers an adult education program for anyone at least 18 regardless of age can receive GED preparation, assistance with developing resumes and job applications, as well the opportunity to attend job readiness seminars.
With grant funding from Americans Helping Americans®, LAMP can purchase, upgrade and maintain the computers and software used for the program in the online GED prep classes, says executive director Mary Mauricio, who adds that “we also have volunteers available for individual tutoring for those who are not as familiar with online learning.”
The program helps adults to become more employable and independent, especially now as times change, where they may have been unable to get jobs without a GED or diploma.
“Now they can with our help.”
Mary also pointed out that “Americans Helping Americans® plays a major part by partnering with LAMP for this program because we can not only help children in our programs – but also their parents too – which benefits the whole family.
“We are honored to have such a partnership and are able to pay it forward to the community with your help.”
And as for Dyanne:
“With the support from Americans Helping Americans®, we are able to continue offering tutoring services at the vocational school so that more young people will receive the best opportunity to succeed.”