Beaufort County program gives high schoolers career head start

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A new program offers high school students a head start on their careers. 

The Career and College Promise program begins this fall. 

It is available at Beaufort County Community College. 

Students can complete their high school diploma and earn workforce credentials at the same time. 

“We are giving juniors and seniors who are still in high school opportunities to pursue a career.”

Vice president of Continuing Education, Stacey Gerard, said the program is now accepting high schoolers from Beaufort and Washington counties. 

“They will participate in various work-based learning opportunities like job shadowing and clinical experiences,” Gerard said. 

The Career and College Promise Workforce Pathways are EMT, truck driving, HVAC, pharmacy technician and phlebotomy technician. 

“As a phlebotomist, you are drawing blood from a patient,” Jackie Butcher said.  

Director of Healthcare Programs, Jackie Butcher, said the need for phlebotomy technicians is great in the region. 

“You would be able to work in either a hospital setting, or in a local physicians office, can work with American Red Cross,” Butcher said. 

In fact, there are currently 254 phlebotomy jobs in our region. 

That number is expected to increase by 3.6 percent by 2027, adding 50 additional jobs to the market. 

Projections show 92 pharmacy technician jobs will be created by 2027. 

There will be 62 HVAC jobs by 2024, and truck driving is expected to increase by 81 positions. 

“Our employers are looking for employees so we are hoping through this program to create a pipeline to fill these positions,” Gerard said. 

Students can earn their industry credentials for free during high school, so they are ready to enter the workforce immediately after graduation if they wish. 

Gerard said there is no limit for enrollment, encouraging any eligible high schoolers to sign up for their fall classes.

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