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Clarkston Community School District

Congressman Tours Clarkston Construction Tech Program

Congressman Tours Clarkston Construction Tech Program

On Friday, May 25, 2018, U.S. Congressman Mike Bishop (Michigan's 8th District) visited Clarkston Junior High School's Construction Technology Program to learn about the skills students are learning in class and applying in real-world projects to positively impact the Clarkston community, as well as how these skills translate to future career opportunities.

Bishop began his visit in the school's workshop, meeting with Construction Tech teacher Jeff Peariso as well as Clarkston Schools administrators, Board of Education leadership, and members of the Clarkston Champions (the district's legislative advocacy group). Peariso gave Bishop a tour of the workshop, introduced him to students, and presented the Congressman with a personalized wooden plaque CJHS students carved on a CNC wood engraving machine for Bishop.

Congressman Bishop then visited the historic Sashabaw Presbyterian Church on Maybee Road, where Clarkston Construction Tech students have been working since last fall to renovate the Civil War-era structure. Construction Tech teacher Steve Wyckoff introduced Congressman Bishop to students who were finishing up some work onsite, and walked through the many improvements completed and in progress at the church. Made possible by a $10,000 grant from the David W. Elliott Memorial Foundation and numerous community donations, the church will become a community gathering space. Wyckoff estimates the project will be completed sometime next year.

Bishop said, "I enjoyed learning more about the Clarkston Junior High School Construction Tech Program and touring their ongoing projects. These students are gaining valuable, hands-on experience. While some will go on to work towards a four-year degree, many students may wish to pursue a skilled trade career. There are many different paths to good-paying jobs, and I'm grateful to Clarkston Community Schools for facilitating these important programs that give young people exposure to meaningful career opportunities."

Said CJHS Principal Adam Kern, "The skilled trades are just another avenue that we can provide our students with to pursue their passions. These students are learning valuable lessons, not just about construction, but also about themselves. For many of these students, this is the beginning of a successful career in the skilled trades. It could be in construction management, rough carpentry, or somewhere in between. We just felt though that we were doing our students an injustice by not providing opportunities to explore the trades and make them aware of the wonderful careers that could be available to them. Now that this program is up and running, we hope to continue to provide the students in the program with many rich learning opportunities that they can take and use for many years to come."

About Clarkston Community Schools: Clarkston is a highly regarded school district with an enrollment of more than 7,500 students. We have seven elementary schools (K-5), one middle school serving grades 6-7, one junior high for grades 8-9, and Clarkston High School, which serves students in grades 10-12. We also have an Early Childhood Center serving children ages 3-5, and an alternative high school/community education facility. Each Clarkston Community Schools' student is fully engaged in a globally focused education, from preschool through graduation, that fosters in students a sense of self, perspective, responsibility/ownership, and contribution. The mission of Clarkston Community Schools is to cultivate thinkers, learners and positive contributors to a global society.

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Media Contact: Mary Ellen Rowe, Marketing Director (248) 623-5460.