LenelS2 Supports Innovative STEM Education Program for High School Students
For the second consecutive year, LenelS2 will sponsor an innovative high school program that helps students to develop the academic, technical and professional skills required for 21st century jobs. LenelS2 employees also serve as mentors for the program, held locally at Edison High School in Rochester, New York. LenelS2 is a part of Carrier, a global provider of innovative heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC), refrigeration, fire, security and building automation technologies.
The international Pathways in Technology (P-TECH) program works with students beginning in the ninth grade and gives those successfully completing four years of high school an opportunity to earn a two-year technical associate degree from a local community college, at no cost.
LenelS2 employee mentors work with about 20 students in the P-TECH program, and according to Paul Wisotzke, manager, test and validation, LenelS2, and program mentor, P-TECH is a great solution for technology companies seeking well-prepared job candidates.
“P-TECH is filling a necessary void,” Wisotzke said. “I view my role as a program mentor as a wise investment as it becomes more difficult for the security industry to find necessary employees with IT-related skills.”
Herman Perry, a computer sciences teacher and head mentor for the P-TECH program at Edison, said LenelS2’s participation has been nothing but positive.
“Paul and his team have been outstanding,” Perry said. “Having a professional closely work with these kids helps spark their interest in getting the education they’ll need for a good career. It helps them see themselves as engineers.”
P-TECH students learn coding, software development and other IT skills, as well as office basics such as time management, creating and delivering presentations and writing effective emails. The program also incorporates a rigorous science, technology, engineering and mathematics based curriculum. Students must maintain passing grades in all high school classes in order to remain in the program. Graduating Edison High School students can continue their P-TECH-related studies at Monroe Community College in Rochester.
After completing the six-year program, P-TECH students may accept jobs with their mentoring companies or continue their education at a four-year college or university, Perry said.
In addition to providing Edison’s P-TECH program with mentors on a weekly basis, LenelS2 also awarded the program a grant last school year to fund a FIRST Robotics team. FIRST is an exciting, mentor-based, research and robotics program where teams build industrial-size robots to play a difficult field game against like-minded
competitors. Competing for the first time against larger, more experienced teams, the Edison group’s entry made it to the regional semi-finals.
The P-TECH program, launched in 2011 and is currently offered in 110 high schools and 77 colleges in eight U.S. states, as well as in Taiwan, Morocco and Australia.