Last week over 300 students from Grades 8 to 12 were introduced to a range of learning experiences at Loyalist College. They participated in programs arranged by the PASS – Partners to Achieve Student Success, and Eastern Lakeshore Regional Planning teams. These teams are part of the School College Work Initiative (SCWI), a partnership funded by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities, and the Ministry of Education — with the primary focus of supporting successful transition from secondary to post-secondary education.
Savanna Morgan is the Coordinator of the School College Work Initiative at Loyalist. “Many times students have a pre-conceived perception of college. These programs give them a first-hand college experience — they have the chance to come here and explore that pathway. The programs we hosted last week covered a broad range of areas of study and were aligned to meet the needs of students of varying ages.”
The largest and youngest group of visitors to the College was made up of Grade 8 boys from the local school boards. Close to 200 students participated in SETUP — interactive, hands-on sessions relating to science, engineering and technology pathways.
Students from Nicholson and Centennial Secondary Schools came to Loyalist for the standardized High Five training — a certification designed for high school students in youth leadership roles. Grade 11 student, Shane Cardinal felt that he learned better ways of working with students and the importance of a positive attitude. Jordan Williams also completed the course. “It was a fun day and now I have my certification. I think that the most important thing I learned is that kids react to your mood, tone or reaction, and it’s very important to be aware of that.”
Another group from Centennial came to participate in Student Success at Loyalist. The objective was to gain a better understanding of the support services available at Loyalist, including Assistive Learning Technology. A panel of current Loyalist students who use the services discussed the differences between high school and college.
Dual credit programs have been developed to enable high school students to receive both a high school and college credit. Last week three groups were on campus for a component of a dual credit program. Two of the groups were taking automotive classes — one from East Northumberland Secondary School and the other from the Algonquin and Lakeshore Catholic District School Board. The third group, from North Hastings, participated in a bioscience program.
The Manufacturing at Loyalist initiative involved a group of Grade 10 students from Quinte and Bayside Secondary Schools who were given the opportunity to gain hands-on experience with manufacturing and welding projects. “I worked on machines that aren’t available at our school,” said Jessica Weiher, one of the participants.
“Today was a real eye-opener for me and it made me see the trades in an entirely new light,” said Joel Poppenk. “The technology is incredible and I have a much better understanding of what the industry involves.”
Joel’s friend Dylan Mastin shared his enthusiasm. “Everything here seems so new age — so advanced. The welding equipment is amazing. I was afraid this was going to be a day of sitting in a classroom and listening to someone talk. Instead we’ve been working on projects, learning as we do things. This day was much more than I anticipated.”