Partnership between college and ISD 917 creates career pathwayEric Van Brocklin and Chad Sheets
Dakota County Technical College and Intermediate School District 917 are partnering to launch a new Transportation Academy in fall 2014. Chad Sheets, DCTC interim dean of transportation and industry careers, and director of the Minnesota Transportation Center, worked with Eric Van Brocklin, principal of the Dakota County Area Learning School (DCALS), to design the Transportation Academy, building off an idea originally spearheaded by ISD 917 Superintendent John Christiansen.
“The DCTC Transportation Academy is about creating a pathway between K–12 and higher education,” said Sheets, who added that similar partnerships between colleges and high schools were studied, with the frameworks adapted to meet the needs of DCTC and ISD 917. “The project was a year in the making.”
Van Brocklin pointed out that the timing of the Transportation Academy could not be better. “A national movement is underway in career and technical education to instill high school students with the practical skills they need to be career- and college-ready,” he said. “Technical education is out in front in making sure the U.S. has the world’s best workforce.”
The DCTC Transportation Academy’s first class will be ISD 917 high school students already in the school district’s Total Car Care pipeline. High school seniors can earn up to 10 college credits and will be considered returning students when they enroll in the college’s Automotive Technician program.
DCTC Transportation Academy
Earn college credits while still in high school
The Transportation Academy at Dakota County Technical College is designed for high school juniors and seniors who wish to pursue an automotive technician career while finishing high school.
- High school juniors will take Total Car Care at ISD 917
- High school seniors can earn up to 10 college credits by completing Total Car Care or successfully applying to DCTC
- Courses are taught by DCTC Transportation faculty
- After graduating high school, Transportation Academy students can enroll at DCTC as returning students