OP-TEC Releases NEW Monographs on Summer Institutes and Outreach Activities to Build the “High School Pipeline”
Emerging technologies such as photonics and nanotechnology must be experienced to be appreciated. Unfortunately, community and technical college offerings in these fields are some of the best kept secrets in the country. High school teachers, counselors, students – and their parents – need to experience these technologies first hand, and they need to learn about the wonderful, rewarding career opportunities that are available to young people.
Visits by college representatives to high schools and “gee whiz” demonstrations may open some doors, but they must be followed up by experiences in the college laboratories where students and their teachers can see how the equipment is being used and to participate in “hands-on” lab activities.
The “middle 50%” of our high school achievers are frequently not encouraged to consider careers in emerging technologies. Most of these young people are capable of mastering the math, science and technology that these careers require and they are more inclined to enjoy and benefit from education when they see that it has a purpose. They deserve these rewarding, challenging jobs that are available to them, and our country deserves the talents that they can provide if they are encouraged and educated.
Colleges that offer technician education programs in new and emerging technologies must be engaged in intense, focused outreach efforts to high school students, teachers and counselors to build the “high school pipeline” and strengthen their enrollments. Some of the institutions in the Optics and Photonics College Network (OPCN) have initiated novel and successful outreach efforts to nearby high schools. Texas State Technical College (TSTC) Waco and Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP), Northpointe Regional Two-Year Campus, have written monographs documenting their strategies and successes.
To order the monographs for free, please visit OP-TEC’s Program Planning Guides webpage at https://www.optecstore.org/product-category/teaching-resources/program-planning-guides/. Complimentary bound copies are available upon request.