Future Ready Perry Pathways Breakfast recognizes high school students

Special to the Chief
Eddie Diaz, Mackenzie Withrow, Keegan Snyder, Connie Saenz, Enrique Rivera, Darek VanKirk, Rachel Kares,
Jefry Gonzalez, Autumn Love, Molly Moorhead, Amber Benway and Christine Krohn pose for a photo during the Future Ready Perry Pathways Breakfast on May 6 at the Hotel Pattee.

The fifth 2021-2022 Future Ready Perry Pathways Breakfast was held on Friday, May 6 at the Hotel Pattee. The event recognizes high school students and staff who participate in the DMACC at Perry VanKirk Career Academy Pathways Program.

In addition to the morning breakfast, students submitted personal resumes as an instrument illustrating their career readiness. Darek VanKirk was the guest speaker sharing his life journey from an initial plan to work in the banking industry to his current role as president of Progressive Foundry. VanKirk expressed the satisfaction found in the skilled trades industry building process and providing a finished product. 

“When you find something you like, you have something special. Find a role model. Smiles are contagious. Give everything you can to make you and your product better. Be passionate. You will find what you need to do. You will find what makes you happy," VanKirk said to the students. “Attitude is the key. It is the key to advance and to become a better person. Attitude is a choice. Attitude matters. Your attitude is everything.”

Darek VanKirk, of Progressive Foundry, speaks during the Future Ready Perry Pathways Breakfast on May 6 at the Hotel Pattee.

Following his remarks, “Perry Economic Development Certificates of Achievement'' and “Perry Economic Development $100 Dollar Scholar” awards were presented by Eddie Diaz to students in attendance who met program expectations during the second semester of the 2021-2022 school year.

Future Ready Perry is a community academic movement partnering DMACC at Perry VanKirk Career Academy, Perry Economic Development, and Perry High School all working together in pursuit of high levels of academic success and career readiness. The program connects high school student interests to future pathways, supporting and incentivizing students to stay on the pathway until they reach their goal.

The Future Ready Perry initiative consists of the Applied Engineering Pathway and the Teacher Pathway with focus on a career path and key employability skills while enrolled in related high school and DMACC academy courses. The Pathways are entry preparation for the DMACC at Perry VanKirk Applied Engineering Academy, the Welding Academy, and the Teacher Academy through the Career Advantage program. Career Advantage provides students with high school and tuition free DMACC academic credit simultaneously and preparation for future entry into the workforce or post-secondary programs.

For additional information or involvement in the Future Ready Perry initiative, contact Connie Saenz or Tom Lipovac at the DMACC at Perry VanKirk Career Academy (515-428-8100).