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College, Career Savvy in Middle Grades

Seventh and eighth graders at six schools are getting a first-hand look at college and careers as part of the Long Beach Unified School District’s Academic and Career Success Initiative.

Long Beach City College recently secured two-year grants for its College and Career Exploration Tours allowing the college to host visits by 75 students each from Franklin, Marshall, Monroe, Stephens, Tincher and Washington schools.

During the visits, students learn about college financial aid options, including a free first semester offered at LBCC to all LBUSD graduates as part of the Long Beach College Promise.  The College Promise is a collaborative effort among the college, the school district and Cal State Long Beach.

The students also learn about six career pathways that they can eventually pursue at local high schools’ smaller learning communities and beyond, including health and medical professions, computer engineering, audio forensics, electrical engineering and administration of justice.

Marshall Middle School students were the first to participate recently.   Working with LBCC faculty at the college’s Liberal Arts Campus, they checked the vital signs of a high-tech mannequin powered by a Macintosh computer.  The students also listened in fascination as a music production expert gradually separated all of the instrumental parts from Marvin Gaye’s “What’s Going On” until only the vocals remained.

More visits are scheduled in the coming weeks and next year.

VITAL LESSON -- Marshall Middle School students Arthur Reyes and Isaiah Stephens check the vital signs of a high-tech mannequin at Long Beach City College as part of LBCC's new College and Career Exploration Tours.