Options Abound for High School Students Preparing for College or Careers

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Today more than ever, Westerville City School District (WCSD) students have an opportunity to personalize their high school experience and explore potential post-secondary paths.  Instead of simply preparing to graduate from high school, students have access to the tools, courses and experiences that prepare them for “what’s next” after earning their high school diploma.

“We encourage students to engage in a variety of academic learning experiences, such as Advanced Placement (AP), Career Technical, College Credit Plus (CCP), and International Baccalaureate (IB) coursework, throughout their high school career,” said Anne Baldwin, WCSD’s coordinator of career technical education and college readiness.  

Baldwin shared that participating in such coursework gives students added benefits and advantages that they may not otherwise experience.

“Students who take advantage of these opportunities not only get an in-depth look at potential career paths to pursue after high school, but they also gain valuable experience that helps them stand out among their peers in interviews for internships, scholarships or jobs,” Baldwin explained.  “It can also shorten the time it takes them to earn a college degree, add flexibility to their college schedule for internships or travel abroad experiences, and help them land a position in the career field that puts their studies to practical use.”

Having so many options may feel overwhelming when it comes time to schedule high school classes.  However, the good news is that all of these opportunities allow students to explore their interests and provide a jumpstart to their future. They key is research, and students can start this process by using Family Connection.  This web page allows students and families to examine various career pathways, explore interests, research colleges, and manage important documents.

“As students plan their high school coursework, we recommend they first start with what they envision their end goal to be,” Baldwin advised.  “Then, research our available course options and check with the colleges or universities you are considering to learn about their admission requirements and procedures for accepting college credits or placement tests.”  

To learn more about these academic options, visit www.wcsoh.org and search for “Career Tech and College Readiness.”  The resulting web page includes several informative documents, including a chart that compares AP, IB and CCP options.  Students with additional questions or who want to discuss possible plans should schedule an appointment with their school counselor.