Tech prep event draws BIG leaders

Published 8:23 am Wednesday, March 10, 2010

FRANKLIN—A recent breakfast held by the Western Tidewater Tech Prep/Career Pathways Consortium drew business, industry and government (BIG) Leaders from Franklin, Suffolk, and Southampton and Isle of Wight counties.

Tech Prep is a nationwide program that helps prepare high school students for college and a career. The BIG Breakfast, held at the Regional Workforce Development Center in Franklin, is focused on making the leaders aware that they are an important component of the success of the program and its students, according to Coordinator Audrey Lawrence.

The theme this year was “Combining Education, Job Outlook and Employer Needs to Prepare Students for the Workforce.”

Guest speaker and Deputy Superintendent of Suffolk City Public Schools Dr. Deran R. Whitney discussed how Suffolk public schools is addressing this issue, and noted that the system tries to “differentiate instruction for a diverse population.”

A member of the Early Childhood Development Commission, Phi Delta Kappa and the Virginia State Reading Association, Whitney has received several awards, including the Outstanding Young Men of America Award and the Principal School Bell Award.

Following the breakfast, the Counselors’ Conference got under way, which featured PDCCC Dual Enrollment Coordinator Chris Smith speaking on the advantages of dual enrollment, and college Counselor Dr. Alan Harris discussing certificate program offerings.

There also was a session regarding the Warehouse and Distribution Career Studies Certificate Program.

Tech Prep/Career Pathways is in partnership with Franklin and Suffolk city public schools, Southampton and Isle of Wight county public schools, and Paul D. Camp Community College.