College & Career Planning
Options After High School
When we think of life after high school, many of us instantly picture a four-year college environment. In the past 20 years or so, the opportunities available to students have expanded far beyond just what four-year colleges have to offer. In choosing what to do after high school, we urge our students to consider ALL options, and we encourage them to focus on the skills, interests, and abilities that they are best suited for. Regardless of what path a student chooses, we encourage students to get education and training in anything, whether it be painting, plumbing, teaching, nursing, becoming a lawyer, etc. Become a master of your craft! Please see the options below for more information:
Four year traditional college/university
Four-year colleges and universities are where a student can earn a Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Science (BS) or Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA). The fields of study offered at these institutions can vary significantly. Universities also have a broad range of schools within them, such as a school of business, school of engineering, or a school of health, for example. Some schools have a strong focus on STEM related fields, such as Georgia Tech or MIT. Other schools may have a focus on Fine Arts related areas. The admission criteria for these schools can vary greatly, so it is important to utilize the schools' websites to determine whether or not the school would be the best fit for you. While we refer to these schools as "four-year schools," it's important to note that some schools may have programs that require five years or more to complete degrees. Students are also not required to complete their degree in four years, however some majors have a time limit as to how long you have to complete the degree before having to retake courses. Ultimately, if you are interested in a four-year college or university, we encourage you to start researching and gathering information about the schools you may be interested in so that you may make an informed decision as to where to apply.
Some students may express interest in a particular occupation and would like to start working as soon as possible. Technical schools afford the opportunity for students gain skills for employment in more of a hands-on environment. Technical Schools generally offer three types of degrees:
Technical Certificate of Credit (TCC): TCC Programs are generally less than a year in duration and have strictly program-related courses and training.
Diploma: Diploma Programs aim to broaden a student's knowledge base beyond what a TCC offers and typically take about a year and a half to complete. They have program-related courses as well as some general core classes.
Associates Degree: An Associate's Degree (AS) is the highest level of education a student can earn at a technical school. This degree offers industry-specific instruction as well as a higher number of academic courses. Students may also use this option to obtain a General Associate's degree to transfer to a four-year college or university
Apprenticeships afford students the opportunity to learn a skill or trade through on-the-job training while getting paid! That's right...you can get paid to learn! Currently, the average starting pay for apprenticeships is $15/hour, and wages continue to increase as your student gaines more knowledge and improves upon their skills.
Comprised of five branches, the Military offers a variety of training and career opportunities comprised of both active-duty and part-time opportunities. Full-time participatints typically live on base or in military housing, and they can also live in ships or in homes off-base. Part time service members invlude the Reserve and National Guard and these members train one weekend per month and two weeks per year. Contrary to what we assume from what we see in the media, there are plenty of options in this field in which students aren't "fighting on the front lines." Many of these opportunities allow students to gain an education or skill in which they can be a supportive force for the Military, such as a nurse, electrician, engineer, physician, accountant, and much much more. Please see the section below on Military
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