The principal of Williamsburg High School in Clermont County, Heather Powell, didn’t want to wait. Powell knew from the moment she first heard Said talk about the program that it was something her students needed. Williamsburg High School acted fast and hired a teacher who agreed to spend the summer of 2018 taking 18 credit hours at UC to qualify to teach Early IT classes the following academic year.
“We are a small, rural high school, and we are always looking for opportunities to engage kids in different ways,” she says. “We knew we had a pocket of kids who were thinking about what IT might look like. Dr. Said came out and spoke to us, and we fell in love with it.”
Powell estimates that of the 80 or so students that graduate from Williamsburg each year, about 40% go on to pursue a four-year degree. The balance go on to vocational schools, join the military or enter the workforce. Powell thinks that Early IT will have a significant impact on the number of her students that go to college after graduation.
“If we give kids some success in college while they’re still with us, we think that will open some doors, open some eyes, give them some experiences where they see success, feel success and maybe find a passion that they might not otherwise explore,” she says.