ECPI University and Dorchester District 2 Partner to Develop STEM Workforce

Through new dual enrollment agreement, local high school students earn college credit and industry certifications to ensure college and/or work readiness

Charleston, SC – Approximately 75 Dorchester School District 2 high school students will begin bridging the STEM talent gap in Charleston, taking accredited college-level courses in Computer and Information Science through a unique dual-enrollment agreement with ECPI University. The program, which begins July 7, will focus on providing these students with work readiness skills while conferring college credit and preparing them for nationally-recognized, in-demand industry certifications.

This hands-on education will not only prepare students to enter college, but will also allow them to earn certifications needed to directly enter the workforce—all without cost to parents or students. ECPI University will donate a large portion of the course costs. In exchange, the District will cover the direct costs of training its students. Students must pass the Compass university entrance exam to participate.

“We want to be a workforce development partner to the Charleston community and look forward to partnering with Dorchester 2 to develop tomorrow’s talent, today,” said James Weaver, ECPI University, Charleston Campus President.

Eligible students will begin an introductory 5-week Computer and Information Science course this summer at their home high school. Subsequent courses will be offered at the traditional 9-week Dorchester 2 schedule this fall. In total, students will be eligible to take nine courses, one each term, over the next two years.  Students will be eligible to receive the following certifications: CompTIA’s Network+, Security+, A+ and Cloud Essentials.

Superintendent Joe Pye stated, "We are absolutely thrilled to partner with ECPI University in this endeavor.  The preparation of a viable workforce is a priority for our organization.   Working together to provide work-ready candidates, especially in the area of information technology, is exactly what educational institutions should be doing."

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