For the Star Beacon
JEFFERSON — In January, senior Ashtabula County Technical and Career Campus students got a lesson in success. The program, called Success 101, is offered annually in January and teams students up with academic professionals along with members of the community to help prepare students for life after graduation. Organized by Anne Starcher, career education coordinator, the program runs for three days. On the first day of the presentation, A-Tech guidance counselor Cheryl Daubenspeck introduced the program and also gave students some practical advice on the process of preparing.
“I know that you have probably spent a lot of time listening to people, like your family, teachers and friends, on what to do and how to do things much of your life. Perhaps you’ve tuned some of this out over the years. Now is not the time to tune out advice from people that are trying to help you succeed. We have all made mistakes in our lives that we would like to help you avoid,” Daubenspeck said.
There was also an activity that helped students record some of their goals, but also plan out how those goals could be achieved and identify what would need to happen for them to consider themselves successful for each goal.
Ashley Seavey, a senior Public Safety student, said, “The discussion we had today with Mrs. Daubenspeck really helped us understand that even if we are a little nervous about the next part of our life, we need to try to listen to the advice our friends, family and teachers give to us and keep moving forward.”
On day two of Success 101, A-tech welcomed experts from the community to discuss real-world issues and opportunities with the students. Josh Baker from Glazier Insurance, Sgt. Jonathon Bennett from the United States Army, Barb Pascarella from Huntington Bank, Tony Orlando from Orlando’s Golden Dawn and Paula Raffenaud from Job Source worked with students and discussed issues they would be facing in the near future and offered advice on how to successfully navigate through the next phase of life.
“Although I consider myself ready for life after high school, it was nice to be able to hear advice from people you don’t normally get a chance to talk to,” said Adrienne Coy, senior cosmetology student. “Some of the discussions we had made me think of things I had not thought of before this program.”
On day three of Success 101, Gail Millard from Community First Credit Union, Tammie Moody from A Kids Only in Jefferson, Charlotte Baldwin from Re/Max, George Arnold with 4-H and John Ringer with Ringer Screen Printing met with students throughout the day.
Garrett Sintic, Graphic Arts senior, said, “The financial part of the day was really interesting. I learned a lot about banking that I did not know that will really help me after I graduate.”
Overall, students were exposed to information on banking, renting and buying a house, child care, the cost difference between eating out and making meals at home, starting your own business, employment and interviewing, budgeting, insurance and the option of having a future in the military. The students attended Success 101 one period per day, which was coordinated through their government classes.
Bill Lipps, A-Tech social studies teacher, said, “It seemed like a good match to put it with social studies. We spend a week in the spring that we call ‘Finance Week’ where we cover budgeting, saving and investing, checking, credit scores and reports, auto loans, interest rates, retirement accounts and various other aspects of the students’ future financial lives.”