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Where Talent Meets Career Opportunity

Experiential learning is the process of acquiring knowledge and skills outside the traditional academic setting. It embraces the idea that students learn better by doing - by experiencing - and reflecting upon those experiences, as opposed to being lectured to. Internships, applied learning projects and a variety of creative and professional work experiences are all examples of experiential learning.
High school students who want to become the first in their families to attend college often lack support, guidance and know-how necessary for college admissions and beyond.1 While the number of first-generation ACT takers has nearly doubled since 2011, over half of those taking the test meet none of the four ACT College Readiness Benchmarks. To address this problem, the Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education interviewed first-generation students to identify the factors that had the most impact on college enrollment decisions.2 Pell's findings identified three steps high school educators and administrators can take to help first-generation students get motivated and prepared to enter college.
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On Wednesday, July 15th, four senators announced that they have reintroduced the Youth Prison Reduction through Opportunities, Mentoring, Intervention, Support, and Education Act -- or the Youth PROMISE Act.
I had the pleasure of spending three days last week at the Florida Association of Postsecondary Schools and Colleges (FAPSC) 2015 Annual Conference. This is my second time around and it was wonderful to see many friends from Penn Foster's partner schools - many of whom I directly work with - and some new faces.  
Chipotle Mexican Grill is the latest company kicking its employee benefits up several notches in an effort to attract and retain workers for entry-level positions. Starting July 1, the restaurant company now offers hourly workers full tuition reimbursement, paid vacations days and paid sick time. What started out as an unknown quick-service restaurant in 1993 has grown into a company that empowers its employees to become leaders and embark on a career path.
The number of college students who are 25 years or older continues to grow, and this number is expected to outpace younger students in the coming years. The National Center for Education Statistics predicts that adult students will actually become the new majority. Between 2012 and 2013, students younger than 25 increased by 12 percent, whereas students older than 25 jumped ahead by 20 percent.
The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB) was a reauthorization of President Lyndon B. Johnson's Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (the ESEA). The aim was to improve education for disadvantaged students and set in place accountability measures for Title 1 public schools.  Refreshingly bipartisan in nature, the Act was proposed by the Bush Administration, coauthored by Representatives John Boehner (R-OH), George Miller (D-CA), and Senators Edward Kennedy (D-MA) and Judd Gregg (R-NH). With the swift passing of the bill through both the House of Representatives and the Senate, it was clear that both sides of the aisle supported making education a priority.
Big Brothers Big Sisters is a well-known national organization that, similar to Penn Foster, is in the business of changing lives. Through a matching process that pairs a caring adult " (the "Big") with kids in need of adults in their lives (the "Littles") remarkable relationships are formed and the lives of children are positively impacted in a big way.
On Monday, July 13, seventeen of the nation's largest corporate giants have joined Starbucks CEO, Howard Schultz, in launching a partnership committed to connecting 100,000 of our nation's young people to career opportunities by 2018. To address the plight of disconnected young adults, the coalition has launched the 100,000 Opportunities Initiative.

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