PRINCETON — Students at Pikeview Middle School are receiving an opportunity to learn more about life after graduation.
The middle school students kicked off the start of year with their first meeting of ‘Gear Up’ at a Thursday night football game. Students played cornhole and mingled as they learned about options after high school.
“Gear Up is a federally funded grant program that stands for gaining early awareness and readiness for undergraduate programs,” Pikeview Middle School Gear Up Coordinator Christina Buckland said.
According to Buckland, the goal of the program is to provide more opportunities for students to learn about post-secondary education.
“With this grant we’ll follow this particular group of students from 7th grade until they graduate,” Buckland said. “We’re in our second year of the program so it’s currently with our 8th grade students. It will follow them to Pikeview High School.”
Buckland said this program provides a lot of opportunities to students.
“It provides extra technology to them,” Buckland said. “It provides an opportunity for tutoring. It provides an opportunity for family activities such as our kick-off here where we can have everybody come together and they can ask questions.”
Currently there are approximately 190 students involved in the program.
Pikeview Middle School 8th grader Emily Maddie participates in the program. “It’s a program for students to prepare for college,” Maddie said. “I love it, honestly. It gets you thinking about college and who you want to be.”
The program will also provide the students with field trips.
“Last year we provided them with a field trip to Concord University,” Buckland said. “They got to spend the day doing tours and eating in the cafeteria.”
This year the group plans to visit Marshall University. “We’re providing them with opportunities they may not get,” Buckland said. “Especially being from rural communities here in Mercer County. We really just want students to understand that there is so much out there after high school, whether it be vocational school, a two-year community college program, a technical program or a four-year college and university. We just want them to have a better understanding and to help educate their families as well.”
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Source: Bluefield Daily Telegraph