Loy Norrix students learn and grow during their off-campus classes and internships

Senior+Victoria+McGowan+teaches+students+at+Maple+Street.+She+takes+on+this+role+through+EFE.+

Credit: Flora Harper

Senior Victoria McGowan teaches students at Maple Street. She takes on this role through EFE.

Flora Harper, Staff Writer

Taking English and Computer Science classes through ATYP, Academically Talented Youth Program, gives freshman Emerson Edwards more freedom in what classes she can take in the future. It provides them with more advanced material to challenge themselves in their ELA classes.Being in ATYP has changed the way Edwards handles work. She has had to learn how to manage their time and responsibilities to be successful in their classes.

“A lot of the habits from it are ingrained into my memory,” said Edwards, remarking on how natural it now felt to analyze and write longer pieces. 

Now in their second year of ATYP, Edwards has changed a lot. Having experienced both virtual and in-person ATYP, she knows that it pays off to work hard to achieve the satisfaction of a job well done. By the end of this year, Edwards will have completed English 9-12 in ATYP, giving them more opportunities to pursue their own interests. 

ATYP classes are most notably offered in middle school. During high school, however, students can apply to take classes offered through the Kalamazoo Area Math and Science Center. Freshman Zelda Molitor sees KAMSC as a completely different experience than regular school. Though the classes there are more difficult than what she was used to, she has gained confidence seeing that other students were struggling in the same way she is.

Credit: Paarth Sharma                Freshman Zelda Moliter works in her KAMSC class. This was her first year of KAMSC.

“I saw that people around me were also struggling and it made me feel less alone and more confident doing the work,” Molitor said. 

Being in KAMSC, even in the first few weeks, has given her a confidence boost that she is capable of doing work she is proud of.

KAMSC provides Molitor with a more involved learning environment. Her experience in KAMSC has changed her view on school.  

“The mission of the Kalamazoo Area Mathematics and Science Center Accelerated Program is to design and deliver educational experiences to selected students who will benefit from a highly rigorous, sequential and integrated exposure to mathematics, science and computer science in an environment where respect for self and others is valued,” as stated by the KAMSC  website. 

At KAMSC, Molitor has met new people and has grown closer to people she already knew from their time together. She has learned that she can try new things to challenge herself.

While ATPY and KAMSC are more related to in-school education, the Education for Employment program offered by KPS helps to prepare students for jobs they want to have in the future. Joining the teaching EFE allows senior Victoria McGowan to experience teaching firsthand. She loves seeing how much she can help kids reach their full potential and how they help each other out in the classroom.

“The kids lift each other up,” said McGowan. 

Being in EFE prepares McGowan for adult life. She feels that having the experience of being employed makes her feel like an adult.

Brandy Stiver, gym teacher at Maple Street,  said about McGowan, “[She] has the ability to make a positive change in anybody she interacts with and students would be lucky to have her as a teacher!”

“I work with adults now so I treat myself as an adult,” McGowan said, remarking on how being in EFE makes her feel more mature and capable.