Students prepare for future at GEAR UP, News Guard, 10.29.13, by Jeremy C. Ruark
Deciding what to do after high school might be a daunting task for some, but for Kaley Engel, a Taft High senior, the decision is simple. “My plan is to open a restaurant for teenagers,” said Engel. She said many people have discouraged her because they said the failure rate for new restaurants is high. “But that is my dream,” said Engel. “I am so tired of seeing all my friends get involved in drugs and other things because there is not much for them to do in a town like this. That’s my motivation.” Engel’s plan after she graduates from Taft is to attend college and gain a business degree to help her to open the restaurant. She joined dozens of other juniors and seniors from Newport, Waldport, Toledo and Taft high schools at the annual GEAR UP College Fair held Oct. 28 at Taft High 7-12. More than 30 representatives from trade schools, public and private universities and the Armed Forces offered information to the students during the event.
It’s OK that they might not know just yet what they want to do after they graduate. But we want to open the doors to them and have them be college-ready, so when they decide, they are ready to go.
Taft senior Tyler Dordan came to the college fair looking for information about the physical therapy industry. “I am getting an idea of what these colleges can offer me,” said Dordan. “I also want to see what scholarships are available.” Angela Skjeie, Pacific University’s manager of admissions, answered Dordan’s questions as he filled out a form for more information about Pacific. “We get a lot of attention because of our graduation programs and our athletic programs,” said Skjeie. “We are a private university that offers that small-town feel but we are close enough to Portland to offer that big city atmosphere at the same time.”
Vickie Roller, Taft counselor, said it was important to help students prepare now for after high school, especially if they want to attend college. “It is hard to get into college and it is very competitive,” said Roller. “It’s OK that they might not know just yet what they want to do after they graduate. But we want to open the doors to them and have them be college-ready, so when they decide, they are ready to go.” Roller said there is also financial help available for the students. “Every graduating senior from Taft that goes to college is eligible for a variety of scholarships,” said Roller. “This community is amazing in what it gives toward scholarships.”
Copyright 2013, The News Guard