More than 600 Reynoldsburg City Schools’ parents braved the cold and snow on Monday, February 23, 2015, to learn how to get a jump-start on planning the future for their eighth-graders. Joined by students, teachers, principals and others from the district, parents gained information about high school courses, college courses available in their high schools, career planning, multiple learning academies offered in Reynoldsburg and more. The event was held at Reynoldsburg High School, Livingston Avenue Campus.

Radio One was a strategic partner in helping to build awareness about Parents’ Night Out by encouraging parents to attend the session through pre-event, on-air announcements. In addition, throughout the course of the evening, “City” – a former science teacher turned radio DJ and a Power 107.5 on-air personality – interviewed educators and students. He also provided prizes to attendees during an on-site live radio broadcast. It is all part of the awareness campaign to expose parents and students to the mix of college and career options available to students.

As part of the evening, parents learned about available courses at Reynoldsburg City Schools and how to help students create individualized pathways to success. Booths were set up throughout the high school so parents could have one-on-one conversations and pick up materials about the various course offerings and opportunities for high school students. They also heard from educators about how students can earn college credits while still in high school, AND earn industry-related credentials for them to go directly into the workforce after high school.

“Our goal is to ensure students have multiple options as we prepare them for life after high school and to help them see the wide range of opportunities that are available to them,” said Courtney Heppner, innovation director, Reynoldsburg City Schools.

There are more than 17 different learning academies in Reynoldsburg offering students college credits and credentials in a range of careers from communications, energy, IT, business and logisitics, to engineering, advanced manufacturing, robotics, health care and more.

For more information about Reynoldsburg City Schools, visit the district’s website.

Making Health Care Fun in Pickerington City Schools

Stethoscopes, spirometers, EKGs, blood pressure cuffs, bone identification kits, metabolic testing kits – all things you may see at your next doctor’s visit, right? Well, visit the biomedical science classroom at Pickerington North High School, and you’ll see students learning how to use the latest in medical equipment as part of career and college opportunities in the health care pathway.

“Students get hands-on experience in doing lab work; they get a chance to dissect a real heart; they get to monitor each other’s blood pressure; and so much more,” says Andy Harris, biomedical science and STEM coordinator, Pickerington City Schools. “The program exposes them to medical careers and gives them a great advantage in pursuing college and health care careers once they graduate from high school.”

The biomedical sciences pathway is a four-year program, with a steady progression of coursework. The curriculum enables students to earn credentials in health care and up to six hours of college credits. Students who complete all four years in the class are also prepared to take tests for credentials in up to 10 different areas, which will allow them to enter the workforce just after graduating from high school.

“This year, I have 16 students graduating, and 14 of the 16 are going to college in health care, including nursing school, pharmacology, neuroscience, sports medicine and physical sciences,” says Harris. “This is why we are here – to help our students achieve their goals and move successfully to the next level.”

Pickerington also has established a partnership with OhioHealth. Beginning with the 2015-16 school year, students will have a classroom within the new OhioHealth facility located in Pickerington. “This community partnership is a win-win for students and the Pickerington community – it brings real-world experiences to the class,” says Harris. Students will participate in shadowing and internship opportunities, and will get to stand next to actual health care practitioners and learn what actually happens in a health care environment. Harris also says, “It helps students feel more engaged; it is more of an impact and gets our students excited; it connects the work we do in the classroom. This partnership helps our students visualize themselves in those positions and makes the reality of these career opportunities so much more clear to the students.”

For more information about Pickerington City Schools, visit the district’s website.

Learning How To Learn

High school students at Westerville Central High School are digging deeper into a number of skills and careers across numerous industries, including health care. Ninth-grader Madison Seabury says, “It’s been really surprising all the different careers we’ve learned about. We’re learning a lot of science, but mainly what I am learning is how to learn.”

Students in the health career pathway at Westerville Central are getting hands-on experiences, learning to budget their time and prioritize their work. Such skills, Seabury says, “...will apply to anything.” It’s all part of the district’s focus to reinvent education and expose students early on to careers in health care, business logistics, and advanced manufacturing and robotics. Watch this video to see what the students think about Innovation Generation.

Making Things Is Way Cooler Than It Used To Be

The MIT Mobile Fab Labs offer students the opportunity to work hands on with industry-grade equipment and the latest technologies in the advanced manufacturing and robotics pathway. With this training, they are developing the skills needed to give them a head start in their careers and college coursework. From 3-D printers, to laser cutters, to robotic arms, students are exposed to a variety of tools needed in the advanced manufacturing field today. Learn more about the equipment, the skills developed, and the careers and companies that are using these tools.

Resources Just For You

School districts participating in Innovation Generation have a number of resources available to help counselors, teachers and others communicate about the initiative. All the materials can be customized to individual districts. These include:

To request any of these materials, please contact us at info@innovationgenerationohio.com.

About Innovation Generation
Innovation Generation, a collaboration of 15 central Ohio school districts, is made possible by a $14.4 million Ohio Straight A Fund grant from the Ohio Department of Education. Innovation Generation gives students options to gain credentials AND earn college credits while still in high school. Each participating district tailors courses to meet the unique needs of its community and students, while highlighting the rewarding careers available in advanced manufacturing/robotics, business logistics, health care, or IT, some of the region’s fastest-growing and most important industries.