ANNUAL REPORT Formerly Linking Learning to Life
Celebrating 15 years of improving the educational success and career prospects for youth through school, business, and community partnerships.
52 Institute Rd. Burlington, VT 05408
Office (802) 951-8845 Fax (802) 951-8851
LETTER FROM EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR & BOARD CHAIR Board of Directors:
David Pocius, Chair - Paul, Frank, and Collins Melissa Hersh, Vice Chair - Champlain College Andrew Brown, Secretary & Treasurer Vermont Student Assistance Corp. Penrose Jackson - Fletcher Allen Health Care Marian Lawlor - IBM Corp. Cindy Morgan - New England Federal Credit Union Peter James - WPTZ Channel 5 Lisa Quinlan - Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce Gina D’Ambrosio - Spectrum Youth & Family Services Colin Ducolon - Champlain College Mohamed Basha - TLC Nursing Associates Chad A. Bell - Northfield Savings Bank Shelly Masson - Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Lisa Condon - Red Sapphire Consulting Nancy Schwartz - Vermont Student Assistance Corp.
Rich Tulikangas, Executive Director Lindsey Lathrop, Assistant Director Teresa Poquette, Office Manager Dhyana Bradley, College Connections Coordinator Kerry Hill, Career Development Coordinator Penny Nolte, Data & Evaluation Coordinator Jenna Geery, Program Coordinator & AmeriCorps*VISTA Kimberly Ead, Career Development Coordinator, Winooski High School Simon Parlante, Employment Training Specialist, Burlington High School Pam Gowland, Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor Jennifer Sutton, Community Outreach Coordinator, Hunt Middle School Tiffany Tillman, Community Outreach Coordinator, Edmunds Middle School
Regional Program Partners:
Franklin/Grand Isle WIB* Rutland Regional WIB Upper Valley Business & Education Partnership Bennington County School & Workforce Partnership Central Vermont Economic Development Corps. Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce *WIB = Workforce Investment Board
In March of 2012, Linking Learning to Life (LLL) held a very special event that was partly an opportunity to thank and recognize a few of our essential community partners that make life-changing experiences possible for our youth. Perhaps more importantly, we created for the first time an intentional opportunity for several individuals that have been connected to our work – former students, staff, board members, entrepreneurs, business partners, and educators including a college president – to tell a brief story with the simple guideline to address the statement “And That’s How I Got Here…” What we heard was poignant, often humorous, deeply personal and always powerful. Virtually all of our story tellers in some way brought out the impact that LLL and the work that we do has on transforming lives in positive and powerful ways. The transformation theme played out in many ways during the year and is guiding us in important ways forward. As displayed prominently on the cover of this report, LLL is now going forward under our new name – Navicate. This is one of the results of an extensive rebranding process we undertook with our colleagues at Fifth Element Associates. It involved a good deal of internal staff and board examination as well as external consultation with many of our constituents. Our new brand represents an opportunity to build on the excellent foundation built by LLL with a less tongue-twisting moniker, as well as a way to chart new and emerging territory in education and workforce development that supports youth success. Part of the new territory we are exploring is working to expand programs and establish new partners in parts of Vermont where we have not had a presence in the past. There is very exciting news related to economic development, for example, in the Northeast Kingdom. A huge number of new jobs are being created and these will require an unprecedented level of preparation and skill development among Vermont youth. We want to be part of the solution to this ‘good problem’ and are connecting with regional and state organizations to help plan and coordinate our efforts. And we are working hard with our friends at the state level to expand the capacity of schools and employers around Vermont to create and sustain high quality Work-Based Learning (WBL) opportunities for middle and high school students. The Agency of Education has articulated a vision for transforming Vermont high schools by creating flexible pathways to successful school completion. Part of that vision recognizes that all students should have WBL opportunities – engaging, relevant, hands-on learning experiences to prepare for their future. We are now moving forward, with additional support from the Vermont Department of Labor and IBM (true public/private partnerships), to create WBL professional development opportunities for educators and employers. In this way we are jointly working to build a consistent and cohesive system of WBL across Vermont. Help us Navicate forward! As always, our success relies on all of you.
Rich Tulikangas, Executive Director
David Pocius, Board Chair
2012 BY THE NUMBERS
5,377 Navicate students
4,752 Learn to Earn participants 270 TIPS interns 153 College Connections dual-enrollment students
182 Job readiness participants 20 PILOT leadership students
550 Businesses 53 Middle & High Schools
Learn to Earn Career Workshops & Events A career event program for 7th-10th graders that includes a motivational kick-off speaker, hands-on career workshops facilitated by local professionals, and opportunities to explore career options.
Over 92% of students agree that Learn to Earn helped them consider career choices they can make for the future. TIPS Student Internship Program
A high school internship program that involves a career readiness skills class taught at the school in preparation for a 40 hour unpaid internship with a local employer.
Over 1,550 students from 25 high schools participated in internships over the last 6 years; approximately 50% gained paid employment as a result.
“It is not necessary for somebody when they are 14, 16, or 20 to know exactly what it is that they want to do. Probably none of us did at that age. But it is really important that they have experienced enough things so they start to know what is possible.” - Tim Donovan, Chancellor of Vermont State Colleges PILOT Youth Leadership Program
A leadership development program for Chittenden County high school juniors modeled after Leadership Champlain. Students meet for a full day seminar each month to discuss important issues affecting the community, to explore different career opportunities, and develop leadership skills.
100% of PILOT students would recommend the program to others. As one PILOT student reported, “I learned how to communicate appropriately with adults. I gained leadership skills, and the ability to be a leader in a group.” College Connections Dual-Enrollment Program
A dual-enrollment and college access program where high school age students can take college classes and earn both high school and college credit. Participants receive individual support with exploring post-secondary options and enrolling in college. English-language learners are also able to prepare for the TOEFL college entrance exam. Tuition is subsidized or free for participants if they meet certain criteria.
College Connections students enroll in and graduate from college at significantly higher rates than state and national averages. Other Navicate Programs
Ready, Set, Work! Summer Work Crew Learn, Earn, and Prosper (LEAP) L-Works Youth Employment Services (YES) Middle School Community Outreach Program
OUR STORIES - ALUMNI SPOTLIGHTS Dženeta Karabegović VISTA Staff Member & Graduate Student “Thanks to LLL’s College Connections program, I had a semester of credits by the time I started college and was able to graduate in four years with a double major and minor. Being back at BHS eight years later, helping to run one of the programs, was a somewhat surreal experience on one hand, yet it felt completely natural on the other. Throughout the summer, I felt I was contributing not only to the students’ development and skills building due to my own perspective and past experience, but also gaining insights about how non-profits operate and the dedication and innovation that is required within the teams that run them to remain successful. I gained a newfound appreciation for the multitude of work that goes on behind the scenes in organizing the variety of activities and helping students succeed not just during their time in high school, but also beyond.” Dzeneta is currently pursuing her PhD in England and hopes to teach in a university and continue to do academic research.
Mohamed Basha Board Member & Business Owner “I’ve been involved with LLL for 13 years and started in their College Connections program in 1999 when I was a sophomore at Burlington High School and it really impacted my life…with every turn of the way, everything I learned and everything I went through. It all now makes sense. To be able to see that is really powerful… I’m 26, running a company in Vermont and employ over 200 people in Vermont and New Hampshire. We make a difference in people’s lives and this is because of Linking Learning to Life. Being an entrepreneur is because of what I learned through LLL. I was able to take college classes...and when I got done with high school in 2002, I had almost one year’s worth of college credit. That really gave me a jumpstart in life. In high school I wanted to be an engineering major and was accepted at WPI and UVM’s School of Engineering, but today I’m a nurse. That’s because of LLL. I realized engineering was not for me through an internship through LLL. Every step of the way, LLL was there for me and I am extremely grateful.” Mohamed is the founder and owner of TLC Nursing Associates in South Burlington, VT.
2012 Grantors & Contractors:
Other Sources of Support:
2012 Annual Report