South-Western Career Academy receives state grant

By Dedra Cordle
Staff Writer

The South-Western Career Academy will receive financial assistance from the state as they prepare to expand its programs for the next school year.

Earlier this month, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine and Lt. Governor Jon Husted announced the recipients of the Career Technical Education Equipment Grant Program which will help schools purchase up-to-date equipment so they can better prepare students to be career-ready upon graduation.

“New technologies are transforming the economy, and to prepare students for those careers, we need to invest in the machinery, technologies, and training that educators need to prepare students for the growing number of careers in the Ohio economy,” said Husted. “Through these investments, thousands more students will graduate high school career-ready – prepared for careers without college debt and providing Ohio employers with the talent they need to compete globally.”

According to Evan Debo, the executive director of communications with the South-Western City School District, the career academy will receive more than $300,000 to purchase equipment for the new HVAC program and the expansion of the Pre-Nursing program.

“We are incredibly fortunate to have been named one of the 56 recipients of the 2024 Career Technical Education Equipment Grant program by the governor’s office,” said Debo. “The $313,604 in funding comes at an incredibly important time for the SWCA as it is on the precipice of a significant program expansion for students with two new programs on the horizon for this upcoming fall.”

Among the approved programming purchase for the HVAC program are:
•Table-Top Heat Pump Trainer
•Electronic Expansion Valve Table-Top Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Trainer
•HVAC Electrical Control Trainer
•Residential Wiring Trainer TUE-150
•Multi-Head Mini Split Heat Pump Training Unit
•Deluxe Residential Heat Pump with Duct Work & TV TU-406C
•Deluxe Residential AC Training Unit with TV & Duct Work TU-206C
•Basic Refrigeration Trainer TU-100
•Domestic Refrigeration Build-Up Trainer TU-101
•Lab Volt AC/DC Training Systems
•Build Pro Welding Table

The state funding will also be used to purchase various student tool kits and supplies for the HVAC program.

Christine Galvin, the director of career technical education, said student interest for the program has “been very positive.”

“At the close of our February SWCA application window, student interest in the HVAC program has been very positive across the four high schools with over 50 applications submitted by incoming junior students,” she said.

The career academy will begin offering the HVAC program at the start of the 2024-2025 school year.

Among the programming purchases that have been approved for the Pre-Nursing program are:
•Laerdal SimMan 3G Trauma Patient Simulator and Accessories
•Pocket Nurse Hydraulic Multi-Treatment Stretcher

The state funding will also be used to purchase various student tool kits and supplies such as bed pans, blood pressure cuffs, gowns and stethoscopes.

The SWCA has offered the Pre-Nursing program since its inception, but recently made the decision to expand due to student demand.

“From a programming standpoint, our traditional Pre-Nursing course has been capped at 48 students (24 juniors and 24 seniors) resulting in prospective applicants regrettably being waitlisted to get into the program,” said Galvin. “Beyond this student interest to drive the need, we know our community has a high need for nurses, as currently, the top three jobs listed on the Ohio Top Jobs list for Central Ohio are Home Health Aides, Registered Nurses, and Personal and Home Care Aides. When we saw a pathway to expand student access and training for students to receive their STNA (State Tested Nurse Aide) credential while also meeting the needs of our community, a plan was developed to meet those needs head on.”

According to the district, 107 students applied for the 2024-2025 Pre-Nursing program. The 2024-2025 courses of Pre-Nursing enrollees will see 48 juniors and 24 seniors. The 2025-2026 courses of Pre-Nursing enrollees will then expand to encompass 48 juniors and 48 seniors, doubling the current output in 2024 from 48 enrollees to 96 enrollees by the fall of 2025.

Funding for the Career Technical Education Equipment Grant Program was included in the 2024-2024 state operating budget in addition to $200 million for the Career Technical Construction Program. The state will distribute more than $67.7 million to the 56 schools that were named as the recipients of this year’s Career Technical Education Equipment Grant.

Previous articleJackson Township seeks funding for emergency training
Next articleCity starts process to install 340 ADA compliant sidewalk ramps


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.