Oakland Community College and Oakland Schools signed an agreement today that provides Oakland County high school students a seamless transition from the Oakland Career and Technical Education programs into a post-secondary course of study at OCC.
The agreement is an effort by both schools to help fulfill the need for highly trained technicians, engineers and designers in skilled trades, IT, healthcare, retail and hospitality in Southeast Michigan.
OCC Executive Director of Curriculum and Student Learning Marty Orlowski said the partnership will help students making the transition from one school to the next.
“This has been an exciting opportunity to have two very different organizations and, through this collaboration, take a clunky system and streamline it to make it much easier for students to receive articulating credit from secondary to postsecondary.”
Dr. Vickie Markavitch, superintendent for Oakland Schools, called the agreement historic and said it elevates the longstanding partnership between OCC and Oakland Schools.
“We have such a wonderful history of partnership and we’ve taken that partnership to the next level,” Markavitch said. “This is going to be a critical component of helping our young people find their pathway from high school to postsecondary education to the jobs that are in demand and the employers that are so anxious to find them.”
Amy Flynn, who handles postsecondary transitions for the Oakland Schools, said students will benefit greatly from the partnership.
“The workforce is really in need of ‘skilling-up’ and we have this opportunity that community colleges can provide,” she said. There’s a mentality out there that students need to be prepared for a four-year degree and we need to take a look at that and what a student’s success looks like.”
The agreement helps smooth the transition and get secondary and postsecondary staff working together to align that curriculum, to build relationships and trust, she added.
“Students will be able to establish a course of study and map it out along the way,” she said. “It’s not necessarily a new concept in education, but we found a way that’s easy, accessible, and barrier free.”
With five campuses throughout Oakland County, OCC is celebrating its 50th year. OCC is the largest community college in Michigan and the 25th largest in the nation. It offers degrees and certificates in more than 160 career fields and university transfer degrees in business, science and the liberal arts. More than a million students have enrolled in the college since it opened in 1965.
About Oakland Schools:
Oakland Schools, one of 56 intermediate school districts in Michigan, works with the 28 public school districts, nonpublic schools and public school academies in Oakland County to help each one preserve its own unique identity, respect its special needs, and deliver quality educational programs to every student in Oakland County. To learn more about Oakland Schools, visit www.oakland.k12.mi.us.