In 2017, Detroit Regional Dollars for Scholars (DRDFS) partnered with Center Line High School (CLHS). Since then, CLHS student participants have received targeted academic support, and $140,000 in scholarships from DRDFS. Every partner high school shares a passion to help prepare local students for post-secondary success. In addition to partnership with DRFS, CLHS offers students many opportunities to prepare for life after high school.
Students Choose Career Pathways
In a recent conversation with CLHS Principal Andrea Szabo and Next Level Scholars Program Adviser Audrey Kary, they shared details on all the great programs CLHS provides to their students. The school operates under a wall-to-wall career academy model, in which each student chooses a career path and takes focused elective courses in their chosen field. To begin, each 9th grade student patriciates in the school’s Freshman Academy, where they learn about the many career choices available to them. At the end of the year, students choose to attend either the Health and Human Services Academy or the Industry, Technology or Innovative academy within CLHS. This career pathway choice dictates which elective courses they will take throughout their time in high school.
If students want to explore classes within their chosen career pathways that are not offered by CLHS, they are able to seek out various classes offered via the Southwest Macomb Technical Education Consortium (SMTEC). Because CLHS is one of four schools that make up SMTEC, they are able to offer students a wider selection of Career Technical Education (CTE) classes. These courses focus on high-wage, high-demand skills that are needed in today’s workforce.
Other students at CLHS who are interested in pursuing college courses starting in their junior year may choose to join either the dual enrollment program or the early college program, both offered through Macomb Community College (MCC). These programs are offered at no cost to students. It is possible for students to simultaneously earn their high school diploma and associates degrees upon completion of the early college program. In addition to the above, CLHS offers after school programs including Robotics, Engineering Pathway, a C2 STEM program offered through Wayne State University, and more.
DRDFS Impacts Center Line Students
Principal Szabo and Ms. Kary are enthusiastic supporters of the partnership between DRDFS and CLHS. In order to recruit students to join DRDFS, Ms. Kary identifies students who will benefit most from the program. She meets one-on-one to educate eligible students about the program, and guides them through the application process. She and Principal Szabo have noticed the life-changing impact DRDFS has made on students at their school, like a member of the Class of 2021 who decided to attend Oakland University after the virtual campus tour with DRDFS, or the student who decided to follow his passion to become a barber, and the student who decided to attend the University of Michigan after an in-person campus tour in 2019. Ms. Kary added “DRDFS helps students realize and pursue what they really want to do. They know they have people supporting them and they don’t have to do it alone.”