Youth Apprenticeship Signing Day 2017

CCSD Students Put Their Names on the Dotted Line at Youth Apprenticeship Signing Day

North Charleston, SC – Youth Apprenticeship Signing Day might not have the same national notoriety as National Signing Day. However, in the Lowcountry, this regional collaborative effort with school districts, businesses, and organizations is picking up steam.

The 4th Annual Youth Apprenticeship Signing Day was held at Trident Technical College (TTC) August 8, 2017. Sixty-one students, including 27 from Charleston County School District (CCSD), made their commitment to local businesses “official” by signing a document.

“Our Youth Apprenticeship Program is just one of many ways that CCSD prepares students to be college, career, and citizenship ready,” said Rich Gordon, CCSD’s Career and Technology Education Executive Director. “Apprenticeships, aligned with the appropriate classroom instruction, provide rigorous and relevant academic, technical, and employability training for a wide variety of high-skill, high-wage, and high-demand 21st century careers.”

Modeled after National Signing Day, where high school student-athletes sign National Letters of Intent to colleges or universities where they will play a sport, Youth Apprenticeship Signing Day gives students who are going into the workforce at a young age a similar experience when it comes to excitement and importance.

“This event provides us with the opportunity to celebrate the most exciting educational initiative I have experienced in my entire career,” said Trident Technical College President Mary Thornley. “It is exciting because this program has power. It has the power to change lives in remarkable ways and the power to accelerate our economy and build a strong community. It is also exciting because it is a shining example of the type of change that can occur when multiple organizations work together in a united effort to achieve a common goal.”

Special thanks to signing day’s  keynote speaker Amy Firestone from the US Department of Labor.  And special thanks to Debbie Meuli, formally with local manufacturer IFA Rotorion, for sharing the story on how the Charleston region’s Youth Apprenticeship program began over 4 years ago with a meeting she hosted after the president of her company asked, “Where are my Youth Apprentices?”

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Thanks to the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce, and their Accelerate Greater Charleston initiative, the participating students’ college tuition and fees were taken care of for the inaugural cohort, and this wonderful support for the Charleston’s Youth Apprenticeship program continues today!

The following CCSD students and graduates participated in the 2017 Youth Apprenticeship Signing Day:

Academic Magnet HS
Kevin Boyd, Class of 2019 (CNA/Pre-Nursing with Roper St. Francis Healthcare)
Jared Lipton, Class of 2019 (CNA/Pre-Nursing with East Cooper Medical)
Burke HS
Sheniah Everson, Classic of 2019 (CNA/Pre-Nursing with Roper St. Francis Healthcare)
Charleston Charter School of Math and Science
Jackson Beall, Class of 2019 (Industrial Mechanic with Bosch)
Nicholas Brennan, Class of 2017 (Networking with Trident Technical College)
Charles Gries, Class of 2018 (EMT with North Charleston Fire Department)
Garrett Academy of Technology
NyAsia Green, Class of 2019 (Bookkeeping with Greystar)
James Island Charter HS
John C. Geiger, Class of 2017 (Industrial Mechanic with VTL Precision)
Magjholy Miller, Class of 2018 (Culinary Arts with Kiawah Partners)
R.B. Stall HS
Joshua Blackwell, Class of 2019 (Auto Mechanic with Hendrick Automotive)
Kyra Kriseman, Class of 2017 (Hotel Operations with Hyatt Place)
Cameron Lattimore-Johnson, Class of 2017 (Auto Mechanic with Hendrick Automotive)
Kyle Masterson, Class of 2018 (Industrial Mechanic with Cummins)
Wando HS
Marco Barrera, Class of 2018 (EMT with Dorchester EMS)
Frederica Baldassarre, Class of 2017 (EMT with Dorchester EMS)
Patrick Boyle, Class of 2018 (Programming with NetGalaxy)
Holt Davis, Class of 2017 (EMT with Roper St. Francis Healthcare)
Callie Drinko, Class of 2019 (Auto Mechanic with Anderson Automotive)
Parker Frontz, Class of 2018 (Auto Mechanic with Hendrick Automotive)
Porter Rice, Class of 2018 (Auto Mechanic with Anderson Automotive)
Allison Shipp, Class of 2018 (Civil CAD with Meador)
Colin McIntire, Class of 2018 (Auto Mechanic with Hendrick Automotive)
West Ashley HS
Julian Aycock, Class of 2018 (Auto Mechanic with MINI of Charleston)
Tyler Brooks, Class of 2018 (Auto Mechanic with Jones Ford)
Briana Brown, Class of 2017 (Medical Office Assistant with Roper St. Francis Healthcare)
Ashley King, Class of 2017 (Networking with Blackbaud)
Tre Scott-Johnson, Clas of 2018 (Security / Pre-Law Enforcement)

CCSD Youth Apprentices hired in 2016, now continuing into their 2nd year of the program:

Academic Magnet HS
Michael Pi, Class of 2018 (Programming with Boeing SC)
Damon Otero, Class of 2018 (Networking with Kotori)
Garrett Academy of Technology
Ty’Celia M. Young, Class of 2018 (Industrial Mechanics with VTL Presicion)
James Island Charter HS
Robert D. Paige, Class of 2018 (Industrial Mechanics with Bosch)
R.B. Stall HS
Ian K. Cole, Class of 2018 (Industrial Mechanics with IFA Rotorion)
West Ashley HS
Khaseem Capers, Class of 2016 (HVAC with Limric)
Malik Miller, Class of 2016 (HVAC with Cullum)
Keenah Saunders, Class of 2017 (Medical Office Assistant with Roper St. Francis Healthcare)

Special thanks to all the amazing partners that ensure this opportunity is available for students in the Charleston region, including: the host companies in 16 career pathways, Trident Technical College, Apprenticeship Carolina, Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce, the US Department of Labor, and educators in schools throughout the community.

To learn more about Youth Apprenticeships, please visit this page on the Trident Technical College website: http://www.tridenttech.edu/career/workforce/car_youth_apprenticeships.htm

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West Ashley High School Robotics Team Earns 1st Place at Regional Qualifying Event

Mr. Nicholas Holmes,  Mathematics and Mechatronics Teacher, and Robotics and Trebuchet Team Advisor at West Ashley High School, provided the following report on the WAHS VEX Robotics Team’s success in their most recent event on December 10, 2016 at the College Park/Cane Bay Regional Qualifier in Ladson.

964607df-vex-logo1All 4 teams from West Ashley HS competed against programs from high schools throughout the state, including Goose Creek, Bluffton, Beaufort, Columbia, and Orangeburg.

Two WAHS teams were part of the 3-team alliance that won the tournament.  WAHS students also won the Excellence Award, Design Award, Programming Skills Competition, and Driver Skills Competition.wahs-2

“Through our teams’ success at the event, we earned the opportunity to move on to the SC State Championship and the CREATE VRC National Championship in Council Bluffs, Iowa.” said Holmes. 

The WAHS team was successful in the event due to their excellent teamwork. From the design to the drivers on the day of the event, it was a team effort. One specific factor in robotics is the code the programs the actions and abilities of the robot. WAHS students used a multidimensional array systems to calibrate our motors in real time.  This code recalibrates our motors every 50 milliseconds to make sure they are doing precisely what we want them to do.  Even if an outside force acts on our robot, gyroscopes, accelerometers, encoders, and sonar sensors will reposition the robot so that it will continue to complete the required task without fail.

“The coding used for this event was an original idea by one of our senior students, Noah Combs.  He is also the driver of our best robot and the winner of the skills challenges and excellence award.  Noah came to me one day, after leaving his AP Computer Science class, and told me that he thinks we can use an array set to calibrate the motors.  Motor calibration is something the team had been battling for over a year.

Within 30 minutes, Noah had scratched out a basic code that did the job we have been trying to figure out since the beginning of last season!!” said Mr. Holmes.  WAHS robots have the ability to operate our robot at an advanced rate of precision.

“We are thankful to have engineers serving as mentors for our team from the Army Corps of Engineers and Cummins Charleston. We also remain extremely thankful for the financial support provided to our team from the Charleston chapter of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers.” added Mr. Holmes.

Thank you to Mr. Holmes, his amazing students, and all the parents and other terrific supporters of the award winning West Ashley High School Robotics Team! 
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Charleston Area Students Enjoy Hands-on Learning at Inaugural STEM Career Fair

December 10, 2015 – Charleston, SC – Approximately 1000 students from throughout the Charleston region attended the inaugural High School STEM Career Fair held at Exchange Park Fairgrounds in Ladson. Career Fair header

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Over 40 local companies brought interactive exhibits with a goal of sharing the high demand, high wage workforce opportunities available right here in their community.

Acutec Industries, LLC Excel Apparatus Services Roper St. Francis
Airgas / Lincoln Electric Google Santee Cooper
American Metal Casting Consortium Hendrick Automotive Group SC Aquarium
American Society for Metals Hubner Manufacturing Corp. Scout Boats
Atlatl Software Ingevity SCRA
Berkeley Electric Coop Lincoln Electric / Airgas SPAWAR
Blackbaud Liquid Box STEM Premier
Boeing South Carolina MAHLE Behr Charleston STEM Visions
Charleston Defense Contractors Association Medical University of South Carolina Streit USA Armoring
Charleston Southern University ModernTech Tighitco
Cummins Turbo Technologies Nucor Steel Trident Technical College
Daimler Vans Manufacturing Palmetto Construction Group UEC Electronics
ECPI Robert Bosch LLC USC College of Engineering and Computing
and more!

From electrical linemen doing demonstrations on utility poles to armored vehicles – there were many highlights to see before the students even entered the expo building!

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High school robotics teams from West Ashley HS, Cane Bay HS, Fort Dorchester HS, and Ashley Ridge/Summerville HS demonstrated their creations and even launched t-shirts into the crowds!

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Participating CCSD schools included:

R. B. Stall HS West Ashley HS Garrett Academy of Technology
Burke HS Baptist Hill MHS Military Magnet Academy
St. John’s HS North Charleston HS Charleston Charter School for Math & Science
Lincoln MHS Wando HS

Check out this excellent article on the event published in the Charleston Regional Business Journal:
http://charlestonbusiness.com/news/56487-stem-career-fair-gives-students-hands-on-experience

Thanks to Sonic Drive-In Dorchester Road, Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers Summerville, Sam’s Club, and Coastal Coffee for the food & beverages.

Thanks to all the cooperating school districts, economic development offices, and local colleges for their support for the event!

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Thanks to the Exchange Park Fairgrounds for hosting the event, to Grady Johnson & the AMAZING SC Biz / Charleston Regional Business Journal Team for being the presenting sponsor, and all the sponsors and exhibitors that made the career fair possible – looking forward already to year #2!

 

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West Ashley HS’s Graduating Engineering Majors Present to WAHS Engineering Advisory Board; Robert Rentz Named Excellence in Engineering Award Winner

Engineering instructor Dr. Barbara Leonard shared these pictures from West Ashley High School senior’s Project Lead the Way Engineering Design & Development Class presentations to their Engineering Advisory Board, held May 27 2015.IMG_1173IMG_1166IMG_1169IMG_1170IMG_1172IMG_1175

West Ashley High School’s 2014-2015 Excellence in Engineering award winner was Robert Rentz.

Robert Rentz winner of WAHS Excellence in Engineering Award IMG_1163

 

Special thanks to Cummins Charleston for supporting this special recognition for Robert Rentz.

 

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R. B. Stall’s FIRST Robotics Team 4243 Shares 2015 Success in Video Compilation

Check out this amazing video from the R. B. Stall FIRST Robotics Team 4243 – Congratulations to these amazing students on all their success.

R. B. Stall Robotics Adviser and CTE Department Chair Mrs. Kimberly Pickett would also like to extend heartfelt thanks to the amazing parent volunteers and mentors from Boeing SC and SPAWAR for their support of Team 4243 this year leading up to and during the competitions!

Mentors from Boeing SC & SPAWAR included: Marisa Antonino, Michael Bodach, Max Braun, John Brown, Caleb Cole, Renee Esch, Jerry Hull, Brandon Hussey, Tim Lehmann, Onye Nwokonta, Dennis Pickett, and Alex Zhu from Boeing and Richard Daehler-Wilking from SPAWAR

Parent Volunteers included: Steven Iorio, Thomas Chimento, Karina Lopez, Christy Thieman, and Temple Burris

Thanks to everyone that invested their time and talent in this tremendous project-based learning experience for these students!

Enjoy the video! –>

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West Ashley HS VEX Robotics Team #9623 Places 2nd at State Competition

After finishing in 1st place at the regional Lowcountry VEX Robotics Challenge on February 21, 2015, the West Ashley High School Robotics Team #9623, competed and finished 2nd overall out of 45 teams from throughout the state in this past weekend’s state competition held at Spring Valley HS in Columbia!

WAHS VEX Robotics team adviser Mr. Nicholas Holmes gave this recap: “part of the event requires teams to partner with teams from other schools,  and we selected the team “Combined IQ” from Oakbrook Prep School to be our ally (just as we did at the Lowcountry VEX Challenge).  We swept the first and second round of playoffs.  The finals were a “best-of-3″ match against a team from Anderson Districts 1 & 2 Career and Technology Center (ACTC).  The first match went to ACTC and we won the second match.  The state championship came down to a single tie-breaker game, which we ultimately lost.  Despite this heartbreaking loss, WAHS is very proud to be ranked as the #2 robotics program in the state of SC!”

Here are some additional pictures from the event – Congratulations to Mr. Holmes and his amazing students on their success at the statewide VEX Robotics event!

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West Ashley HS VEX Robotics Team Earns Spot in State Competition

West Ashley HS had three robots competing in the recent Lowcounry VEX Challenge.IMG_0740

Mr. Nicholas Holmes, WAHS Robotics adviser provided the following recap of the event hosted by his high school:

“Of our 3 teams, our WAHS-A team was the most successful with a record of 8-1, and finished the qualification matches ranked as the #1 overall seed. The team went on to win the first round of playoffs easily, buy missed making it to the final match by 3 points! The team also earned top honors with the 3rd best autonomous program and the 7th best driver. (These are all out of 25 teams).”

“The WAHS-A  robot qualified to participate in the South Carolina State robotics competition on March 7th.  If they are one of the top 3 teams, they will be invited to compete in the World robotics championship in Kentucky in early April!”

“Last year, our robot made it to the state competition but was only invited because we placed it on a waitlist. This year, we earned our spot and have a legitimate shot of taking this thing all the way!!”, Mr. Holmes added.

Students paid special tribute to Mr. Phillip Beyel, a former teacher at WAHS that moved out of town recently, by attaching his picture to one of the competition robots.

Special thanks to Cummins Charleston for their investment of time and talent in the WAHS VEX Robotics team!

Congratulations to Mr. Holmes and his students on hosting a terrific event, and on their success in this robotics competition – we wish them good luck in the state event!