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Column: Opportunities abound at Collaborative

District 518

WORTHINGTON -- Student achievement is highly valued at the Nobles County Integration Collaborative (NCIC). The NCIC fosters student success and learning through innovative initiatives designed to remove barriers, reduce the achievement gap and emphasize the importance of education in life.

NCIC provides many weekly out-of-school time programs to encourage students to achieve in all areas of their lives. These programs are founded on the belief that every student is capable of being a leader and making a positive difference in their community. Through Odyssey, Dynamic 507, CIRCLE Mentoring and Youth Diversity Council students are able to develop leadership skills, meet new people, learn the importance of community and how they have a role in bringing about change through civic engagement. Students also become more culturally aware, understand the importance of academic success and explore future possibilities.

Not only is the NCIC providing the resources for students to grow and learn about themselves, but we are also preparing students for college and the world of work. NCIC allows students to start making the connections between how doing well academically may affect their future hopes and dreams. We ask students, "Are you ready for life after high school? If not, what are you doing about it?" Then staff members provide coaching to help students be successful in school and with planning for the future.

In order to effectively plan for the future, it is also important for students to get exposure to a wide variety of future possibilities. NCIC helps students learn about future possibilities through business tours, college visits and educational workshops. These opportunities are open to all high school students in the six NCIC member districts including Adrian, Ellsworth, Fulda, Round Lake, Brewster and Worthington. Many of these events are free of charge.

NCIC is offering a College Preparation Event on Sunday, Jan. 29 from 12:30 to 4 p.m. for English- and Spanish-speaking families. The session will inform students and parents about the steps that a student should be taking during each year of high school to prepare for college or a career. Specific topics include: choosing a college; paying for college; the importance of goal setting, and also information about the ACT or SAT. This opportunity not only prepares the student, but it is also a wonderful chance for parents to understand their role in helping their child plan for the future.

On Friday, March 9, students can go with NCIC staff members to visit three colleges in Mankato. These include Minnesota State University, Mankato; South Central Community College; and Bethany Lutheran College.

Great opportunities for students to achieve and excel are offered at Nobles County Integration Collaborative throughout the year. Individuals who would like more information or to sign up for the College Preparation Event or the March 9 College Visits, may call NCIC at 507-376-3300 or check out our new Facebook page.

Lakeyta Potter is youth initiatives coordinator at Nobles County Integration Collaborative.