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Gabriel Ramos takes apart a computer as part of his IT training with Project WOW. Photo: Nigel Thompson/AL DÍA News
Gabriel Ramos takes apart a computer as part of his IT training with Project WOW. Photo: Nigel Thompson/AL DÍA News

Growth and transformation for former high school dropouts at Project WOW

Students at JEVS Human Services' Project WOW tell AL DÍA the program's dedicated team of educators has helped move their lives forward.

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Podcast produced by Lee Nentwig and Nigel Thompson, AL DÍA News.

Earlier this year, AL DÍA published an article about Project WOW, a program run by JEVS Human Services at Orleans Technical College that is designed as a second chance for Philadelphia’s high school dropouts—ages 18 to 24. We’ve since returned to hear more of the students’ stories and composed them into an audio story, now available in AL DÍA Podcasts.  

Participants in the free GED preparation and work training program get hands-on education in building trades such as plumbing, electrical, carpentry and weatherization, in addition to information technology. They also receive job coaching services, including résumé workshops, mock interviews, and the opportunity to test for their GED.

But the key to success at Project WOW is a personalized experience that allows the staff to pinpoint a student’s interests and help put together the best plan for them to move their career and life forward. Students come to the program with many reasons for not finishing high school and a stable support system is all it takes to cultivate their success.

The experience has proven to be transformative for students and teachers alike.

 

This article is part of Broke in Philly, a collaborative reporting project among more than 20 news organizations, focused on economic mobility in Philadelphia. Read all of our reporting at brokeinphilly.org.

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