A guiding principle of LAUNCH Flagstaff is that the education consortium’s interests are not limited to the years when students are in primary and secondary schools, but stretch from cradle to career.
That is why ECONA is pleased to be one of the partners working in the group’s Post-Secondary Education and Training Community Action Network. This group is looking to achieve continual improvement in the percentage of high school graduates who continue on a path that will help them successfully pursue a fulfilling career.
That path includes, but is not limited to, attending college for a two- or four-year degree program, military or civic service, or training or apprenticeship that leads to certification in their desired field.
Internships are a key part of this strategy. LAUNCH is looking to work with partners who currently offer internship programs to coordinate their efforts. While it is common to get college credit for internships, LAUNCH also wants to initiate an effort to award high school credit for internships with local companies through the Arizona Department of Education.
We applaud this effort, which will not only help our students but our local economy as well in numerous ways.
Students will get the chance to “try on” a career path before having to make the decision of what type of post-secondary education they want to pursue.
Local companies not only get the financial benefit of having intern employees but also can directly shape the future workforce they will be relying on in the coming years.
By the end of this year, the partners working on this effort plan to establish a baseline of how many graduating high school seniors have experienced an internship. They will then strategize to increase that number by 10 percent by 2020.
To learn more about LAUNCH Flagstaff and its work, including its just-released report on “The State of Education in Flagstaff,” go to launchflagstaff.org.