By Jeffrey Ditchek
I like “it”.
ACS likes “it”
The students like “it”
What is the “it”? The Andes Central School “Point to Opportunities” program.
The PTO is a program instituted this past school year to have students expand their understanding of the career opportunities available to them. Various professionals from our community come in and “teach” a class on what it is like to actually work at their particular careers, the educational credentials required, the good, the bad and the excitement. Those who come in to share their career experiences like what they do and that exhilaration is passed along to the Andes Central School high school freshmen.
Those that shared that excitement this year were:
- Engineering – Jeff Ditchek
- Interior Design – Gerry Murphy
- Attorney & Town Justice – Gary Rosa
- Nurse Practitioner – Valerie Maddalone (Bassett Healthcare)
- Licensed Practical Nurse – Arylinn Smith (Bassett Healthcare)
- Filmmaking – Jessica Vecchione
This coming school year (2014/2015) the program will be expanded to include more speakers and more professions. It is hoped it will confirm the individual student’s desire to pursue a particular interest or have them realize a totally new opportunity they had not considered before.
Feedback from the students has been very positive and many have expressed interest in returning next year as sophomores to experience more.
We thank all of the presenters for their time and the inspiration they provided to the students. In addition we appreciate Dr. Chakar, Superintendent, for recognizing that this has value to the students, and Grace Bacon, Library Media Specialist who has provided guidance and time from her busy classroom. Our mantra is, “The more you know the more you realize you don’t know,” and now the students (and I) realize how much we do not know about many of these professions. We are confident that this program will inspire some students to explore a bit deeper.~
Students and teachers from Living Environment classes at ACS learn how to construct a Living Arbor of willow branches.