Two Madison Consolidated High School seniors look to foster their accomplishments and employability expertise at the Jobs for America’s Graduates (JAG) Region 9 conference on Thursday at Hanover College.
JAG is a national non-profit organization. It focuses on assisting high school students, who show promise, but have faced problems or shocking life experiences, achieve graduation and gain employability proficiency.
There are now 136 JAG programs throughout Indiana. Around 1,400 program affiliates nationwide in 39 states, as per JAG’s website. The network shows off a 96% graduation rate amongst its students.
Caroline Kirby and Carson Denton were present at the JAG’s National Student Leadership Academy in Washington D.C. from December 5-7 and came back with a prize and new perception.
For Kirby, that meant a first-place award in the Employability Skills competition, where students are projected to fill out an application, offer reference letters, get there for an interview suitably dressed and be very successful in the interview to get the employment. After getting recommendation letters from her JAG teacher, Whitney Matthews and her boss, Dr. Thomas Lisle, she achieved it.
Matthews said that she is proud of them all, but she is extremely proud of those two as they were taken entirely out of their element, and they met people who had no idea who they were. She said further that they really kind of stuck together and it ended up being a great experience as everybody said that they were the best children ever. Everyone said they performed the most excellent, they were friendly, they were specialized, and they were anything they could have asked for.
Their chaperone was April Pearson, the JAG controller at Lawrenceburg High School. Matthews said that before the trip, the children had never met her either.
While Kirby was leading in her interview, Denton attended training sessions on communication and leadership. He said lessons on successful communication and body language bonded with him the most.
Denton, who plays on the soccer team, expects to attend the University of Southern Indiana. Denton also applied these lessons when he studies either sports administration or sports management.
The pair was two out of six students chosen from JAG Indiana’s Region 9 to attend. It included Madison Consolidated, Jennings County, Seymour, Brownstown Central, South Ripley, and Milan, Jac-Cen-Del, South Dearborn and Lawrenceburg high schools.
It was distant from a free journey to reach. Both students had to fundraise as a minimum $700 to pay meals, room and board and other costs.