DENTON (UNT), Texas -- The University of North Texas has earned a $1.6 million grant from Greater Texas Foundation (GTF) in support of High School Career Connect – a peer mentoring program to propel career education for middle and high school students in Denton County.
UNT created High School Career Connect to ensure Denton County middle school and high school students have access to quality career education prior to making endorsement, college and/or career decisions. In Texas, all eighth grade students are required to select an "endorsement" area of interest to guide their course selections throughout high school.
UNT student mentors will provide vital career education information to participants following extensive training from UNT Career Center employees. Mentors will share their personal experiences while helping program participants access their options for the future.
"Besides the obvious benefit to middle and high school students, we also realize how this program can impact communication, teamwork and critical thinking skills of the UNT student mentors," said Elizabeth With, UNT’s vice president for student affairs. "Over the long term, we expect to see additional benefits for UNT as high school program participants graduate, enroll at UNT, and become High School Career Connect program mentors for the next generation."
The GTF grant, which funds the first three years of the program, will provide career development tools, skills inventory, resume creation programs, computers and program management.
"Greater Texas Foundation and UNT have a strong history of partnership in support of GTF’s mission to ensure all Texas students are prepared for, have access to, persist in and complete a postsecondary education," said Sue McMillin, president and CEO of Greater Texas Foundation. "We are confident in UNT’s ability to advance career education for students in Denton County to help them make informed decisions about their education pathways. We are thrilled to collaborate with the university on this important initiative."
With the Greater Texas Foundation’s support, UNT launched Teach North Texas (TNT) in 2008. Since then, TNT has graduated nearly 200 highly trained educators with a 100 percent job placement rate. UNT also participates in the Greater Texas Foundation Scholars program, which has produced a rise in the number of Early College High School students enrolling at UNT. These students successfully complete their degrees in a timely manner with the help of the program’s scholarship funding. In 2017, the GTF Board of Directors voted to continue the GTF Scholars program.
"Greater Texas Foundation understands the value of supporting student success at UNT. We are excited to expand our partnership to include this new program," said David Wolf, UNT’s vice president for advancement.
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