IMG_5671

Students Launch School Year with NASA Career Fair and Astronaut Visits

Article written by Sully Recine with CCSD Office of Strategy & Communications: http://www.ccsdschools.com/news/what_s_new/students_launch_school_year_with_n_a_s_a

On Wednesday, Aug. 29 almost 1000 Charleston County School District students from over 20 schools attended the STEM Career Fair where they saw demonstrations of NASA’s new heavy-lift rocket, the Space Launch System.

The event, hosted by Charleston County Government in conjunction with an event fostering partnerships with local businesses and NASA, allowed students to explore STEM-related businesses and participate in hands-on learning experiences and interact with NASA staff.

As part of the Career Fair, retired astronaut Dr. Don Thomas spoke to the attending middle and high school students and later in the week visited students at St. Andrews School of Math and Science, Angel Oak Elementary, Mary Ford Elementary, Sanders-Clyde School and North Charleston Elementary. 


Chad Vail, Work-based Learning Partnerships Coordinator, CCSD Career & Technology Education Support Team, said career exploration of this nature not only improve academic performance but improves students’ knowledge of career options during the critical years when they are also beginning to venture beyond the orbit of their parents.NASA

The students listened intently as Thomas described his time in space and the many space flight experiences he had. Selected by NASA in January 1990, Dr. Thomas became an astronaut in July 1991. Asked by a student what he took from those experiences, Thomas replied, “it changed me in two ways. I now have a keen appreciation for how fragile the earth is. And secondly, ask yourself how you view your place on planet earth. When I am asked where I’m from I say, ‘I’m from earth’,” he told the students. “We all are. We are all earthlings here and we all have to do our part to take better care of our planet.”

SPAWAR was one of the over 25 business vendors on hand. Kelly Thompson, Career Fairs and Career Academies Project Lead for SPAWAR said their participation in the Career Fair and similar events is for a number of reasons. “It helps not only in the workforce but in the community as a whole. But the goals is to get kids interested in science and math, and introduce them to SPAWAR and show them that this is a place that they can come and work locally. We want to keep kids in this area for our workforce.”

Their booth featured Meeper Bots which demonstrated mechanical engineering aspects of toys made of legos with blue tooth capability. The students learned about aero-dynamics, load and various aspects that in turn introduced them to the SPAWAR robotics program.

NASAWando High School 10th grader Ian Barrett was excited to attend the career fair with his engineering class and listen to a real astronaut speak about living in space. And while he has not yet determined his career path, engineering seems like a fun choice he said.

“This is an amazing opportunity for our community for collaboration and commerce,” said event organizer, and Charleston County Government Operations Officer Kevin Limehouse. “We feel this expo was more than just connections with NASA. It allowed like-minded businesses and organizations to meet and work together.”

 

Check out the gallery of pictures from the event below – additional pictures posted to the CCSD Facebook page.

Signing Day 2018 - Charleston County School District - cropped

CCSD Students Participate in Charleston Regional Youth Apprenticeships Signing Day

Charleston Regional Youth Apprenticeships logoOn a beautiful morning in July, 56 students and recent high school graduates (including 26 from seven Charleston County School District schools), were honored at the 5th annual Charleston Regional Youth Apprenticeships Signing Day. Trident Technical College (TTC) and the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce host the celebration and lead the way on this innovative program.

DSC_2655Students, graduates, business leaders, and other community members gathered at TTC’s Thornley Campus (formerly known as Main Campus) for a breakfast, roundtable discussion, and signing ceremony. CCSD Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Gerrita Postlewait and two CCSD grads who participated in the Apprenticeship program, Stephen Maddy (West Ashley Class of 2016) and Byrone Porcher (Wando Class of 2017), were part of the panel.

After the discussion, the following CCSD students and recent grads signed their contracts/letters of intent (24 of the 26 were present):

Automotive

Magda (Iris) Guevara—St John’s High School—Hendrick BMW
Tyler Spigner—West Ashley—Hendrick Dodge
Christopher Schmidt—Wando—Toyota N. Charleston
DM Smith—West Ashley—Hendrick Dodge
Zyaire Singleton—West Ashley—Hendrick DodgeDSC_2676

Bookkeeping/Pre-Accounting

Danielle Olivetti—JICHS—Greystar

CNA/Pre-Nursing

Makayla Walker—West Ashley—MUSC
Jasmine Chavis—West Ashley—MUSC

Culinary Arts

Cameron Dolan—Wando—Wild Dunes
Mackenzie Riley—West Ashley—SNOB

EMTIMG_5453

Brandon Borerro—West Ashley—NCFD
Walter Houk—Wando—City of Charleston FD

Engineering Assistant (PLTW) 2+2 track

Daryll Masanque—R.B. Stall—Boeing

HVAC

Nolan Nickels—West Ashley—Cullum
Kevin Ramirez Nunez—West Ashley—LimRic
David Chestnut—West Ashley—MUSC

Hotel Operations

Grace Earle—Charleston County School of the Arts—Wild Dunes
Harrison Naugle—Wando—King Charles Inn

Industrial MechanicsIMG_5449

Reese Allen—Wando—VTL
Marcus Gore—West Ashley—KION
Alexander Simmons—Wando—VTL

Machine Tool Technology

Thomas Jur—West Ashley—PK Precision
Adam Koecke—Wando—Metalworx
Zayadul Islam—Garrett—Venture

Networking

Brian Hawkins—West Ashley—City of Charleston DOT

Programming

Joseph Marsey—West Ashley—Boeing

Through the Charleston Regional Youth Apprenticeships program, TTC connects qualified high school students with participating employers. The employers interview and hire the students, who then begin employment while taking high school and college courses. At the completion of the apprenticeships, students will have earned a high school diploma, a TTC certificate, a journeyman credential from the U.S. Department of Labor and two years of work experience.

All costs associated with the program, including tuition, books and most materials for apprenticeship-related courses at Trident Technical College, are covered while apprentices are working for a participating employer. Currently, there are over 120 business partners who have or are interested in hiring youth apprentices for the 2018‐19 academic school year.

Photo courtesy of Trident Technical College