Tolles launching ‘Seniors Only’ in fall of 2023


(Posted Dec. 21, 2022)

Madison County high schoolers will get the opportunity next school year to earn business, health care, or drone certifications through a “Seniors Only” program being launched at Tolles Career and Technical Center in fall 2023.

“Although most students come to Tolles as juniors, we saw an opportunity to offer similar programming that’s one year in nature and would give students a leg up on their career pursuits or college applications,” said Todd Hoadley, Ph.D., Tolles superintendent and CEO.

The half-day programs will provide certifications in specific fields, as well as 3.5 elective credits that will transfer back to the student’s home high school. All programs will be offered in both morning and afternoon sessions, giving students flexibility in scheduling additional courses.

Some of the “Seniors Only” programs kicking off next school year include:

• a business program that would result in a Lean Six Sigma yellow belt, Microsoft Excel certification, a project management certification, a leadership certification, and an entrepreneurial education certificate;

• a health care program that gives students the choice of earning either an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) certification or a State Tested Nursing Assistant (STNA) designation;

• a construction trades program focusing on the commercial construction industry, including Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) safety certifications; and

• a drone program that would allow seniors to earn their FAA Part 107 Drone License.

“The FAA 107 commercial drone license is not the certificate for recreational drone flying,” explained Joe Weise who will teach the drone class at Tolles. “The 107 includes how to read a weather report, how to read an aerial map with power lines and altitude, and airspace classifications.

“We’ll also teach students how to do basic maintenance and calibrations on the drones. These are professional unmanned aircraft systems. These are not toys. And this technology is going to explode. I don’t think we even know all the implications yet.”

Full descriptions of each “Seniors Only” program will be included in high school course offering booklets, typically released to juniors in January. Interested students can apply directly for these programs through their home high school counselor. Applications for the 2023-24 school year are now open.

Tolles, whose main campus is located in Plain City, serves students from 11 high schools, including Jonathan Alder, London, Madison-Plains and West Jefferson. Tolles offers 20 full- and half-day career-prep programs at its main campus, designed to provide hands-on experience in high-demand fields including nursing, business, veterinary medicine, construction, engineering, auto repair, culinary arts and early childhood education.

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