Some students feel left on the sidelines during their senior year of high school. Last year, Tiffin City Schools implemented a program to help these students work toward employment in fulfilling careers after graduation.
Bridging Readiness After Graduation (BRAG) was established to provide work-based learning opportunities for seniors to support the development of workplace readiness skills. “Ultimately, for students who want to go directly from high school into a career,” says Amy Wood, Director of Academic Affairs at Tiffin City Schools, “it can provide that bridge to a position in a local company.” BRAG also helps students decide whether they might like to pursue additional education to reach their career goals.
Students are given career assessments to help them discover their interests and strengths. They are then assigned to worksite placements in the community during the second semester of their senior year, gaining experience in fields that match up with their personal profiles. The results are clear. After last year’s initial run of the program, two students were offered full-time positions in a local company on signing day.
BRAG offers students more than hands-on skills. This year, the program paired with a professional skills course provided by Terra State, teaching the “soft skills” employers are asking for. Equipped with these professional workplace skills, students are given a lifelong edge in the job market, no matter what field they choose in the future. TCS also partners with Sentinel Career Center (Vanguard-Sentinel‘s Tiffin Campus) for BRAG, which leverages Sentinel’s work-based learning sites for student placements. This helps ensure clear communication with employers and a streamlined experience for students.
While TCS has been the orginiating district for this pilot work, the vision is to grow work-based learning to other schools in Seneca County. Thus placing even more students into the workforce in 2020 and celebrating the success of graduates no matter what career path they pursue.