Business Students Visit Scotland!

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This summer we will feature some 2014 – 2015 school year highlights as well as some of the exciting things that Jenison Public Schools are doing throughout the summer!  Please join us each week to discover something new and celebrate a fantastic and exciting school year!

IMG_4914This past June, seven students and two faculty members visited Glascow, Scotland as part of the Business curriculum.  Brenda Clark, former Career and Technical Edcuation Director and Business teacher explains “The ultimate goal of the trip was to bring global education to our Jenison students.  Most students in the US do not have an opportunity to study abroad until they are in college and have to pay significant money to study abroad for a semester or a summer.  We live in a global society and we believe that students should have that opportunity while still in high school – to explore their interests, to see if they may want to attend school overseas, and to have the opportunity to learn about another culture.  Additionally, the students were completing their Scottish Business Law course at the Anniesland campus of Glasgow Clyde College, our major partner for this trip.”

IMG_4825During their 15 day trip students took classes from Monday – Thursday for 5 hours a day.  “Our professor for our Scottish Business Law class was a former solicitor [lawyer] and was an expert in the field.”  Every student passed their mid-term and semester exam.  “In fact, Hazel, our instructor, commented numerous times that she wished her college students were as focused and engaged as our students were during their two weeks of class.”  The group was also able to put their learning into practice when they visited the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh and sit in on committee meetings.

As the trip was intended to do, by visiting “numerous colleges and universities, both large and small, in cities and in rural communities, students were better able to start to think and reflect on what type of institution they would want to attend after high school.”
The group also did their fair share of extra-curricular activities and sight seeing.  They spent a weekend visiting the Isle of Skye, rode the Jacobite Steamer [Harry Potter] train, stopped along the shores of Loch Ness – to look for the Loch Ness Monster, of course — toured Culloden [“the site of the massacre of Scotland warriors by the English – think Gettysburgh in terms of historical significance and solemn place to visit”], day trip to Ayrs, and sat up close at the sold out Fleetwood Mac concert through a connection to the road manager.  “It was an experience that can’t be repeated and we were so thankful that [they] worked with us to secure the tickets.”

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“Being part of a global society our students need to have as many opportunities to learn as possible.  By providing a middle college experience for our students and allowing them to earn a college degree while earning a high school degree is so significant.  Additionally, because the SQA program offers face-to-face, blended, on line, and study abroad opportunities we are emulating a college experience which will help our students to be more successful in the future.  Having had a study abroad experience as high school students will certainly give them an advantage as they prepare for their future after high school – no matter their eventual plan.”

Without the support of our Scottish partners this trip and its success would not have been possible!  “Thank you to SQA hosting us for dinner and helping keep the costs down to Helen Williamson at Glasgow Clyde who was the main coordinator on the Scotland side for the trip, to all the people at Glasgow Clyde College, Perth College, and Glasgow Clyde University that helped coordinate our trip and make everything go so smoothly.”

Congratulations to this inspiring group of students on their accomplishments and we know you will continue to make us proud by pursuing your dreams!

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