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AWC earns funding to strengthen pathways between secondary and postsecondary CTE programs


YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - Arizona Western College (AWC) said it was chosen by the U.S. Department of Education to receive over $1.11 million in funding to help bridge the gap between high school and higher education through Project Puente.

AWC said the Project Puente initiative aims to revolutionize the educational experience for high school students by providing efficient pathways to industry-recognized postsecondary credentials.

This would prepare students for future careers in Clean Energy, Construction, Manufacturing Technology, Information Technology, and Engineering. 

“I am thrilled to announce that Arizona Western College has been awarded a Perkins Innovation and Modernization grant for Project Puente. With this grant, Arizona Western College, alongside our consortium partners, embarks on a groundbreaking initiative to build bridges for our students, connecting high school aspirations to rewarding careers,” said Dr. Daniel Corr, AWC President. “Project Puente exemplifies our dedication to student success, workforce development, and creating pathways to prosperity. Together, we are shaping a future where education is a catalyst for positive change and economic empowerment in our community and beyond.”

According to AWC, the Perkins-funded Career Connected High Schools grant program allows educational institutions and workforce systems to partner with businesses and industries to form high-quality and career-connected high school programs.

Grantees will leverage four evidence-based strategies to help students unlock career success such as:

  • Providing postsecondary education and career guidance
  • Increasing access to dual or concurrent enrollment programs
  • Increasing work-based learning opportunities
  • Providing industry-recognized credentials

AWC said the grant is part of the Department of Education's Raise the Bar: Unlocking Career Success initiative which is aimed to help youth access good-paying jobs.

This Career Connected High Schools grant program intends to expand access to more students and high-quality pathways for underserved students.

AWC also mentioned its administration will be going to Washington, DC for the Community College National Legislative Summit in early February.

They will attend a meeting at the U.S. Department of Education Headquarters to discuss the leadership role that AWC will play in Arizona’s career pathway ecosystem.

Article Topic Follows: Education

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Faith Rodriquez

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