Akron Public Schools welcomes UA as sister university
Music by the Ellet High School Jazz Band greeted visitors in the Jean Hower Tabor Student Union today as they arrived to celebrate a new partnership between Akron Public Schools and The University of Akron. The celebration naming UA as a sister university to Ellet High School, National Inventors Hall of Fame STEM High School and Akron Early College underscores the long-standing relationship between APS and UA and will provide extensive support to students in the College and Career Academies at these high schools.
The festive kickoff event featured testimonials from teachers and student ambassadors from Ellet, NIHF Stem and Akron Early College. Grace Kosko, NIHF STEM High School student, served as the event emcee.
Modeled after “Sister Cities” that were launched by President Dwight Eisenhower’s administration in 1956 to help cities share best practices, the collaboration of a sister university will help to bring the best support and resources to APS students to empower them and help them to navigate the future of college and career.
“We are grateful for this latest collaboration, which continues a reciprocal relationship between Akron Public Schools and the University that extends back to 1915,” said Dr. John Green, interim president.
As a sister university, UA will work closely with the schools and teachers to develop classroom lessons that have integrated, career-themed content; design and present problem-based learning opportunities that incorporate thought-provoking, real-world problem-solving activities; and support the implementation of a college admission testing preparation program. UA will also deliver summer enrichment programs and events to high school students; offer college enrichment opportunities; and provide student and parent workshops and assistance on the college admission process.
‘Akron building Akron’
“We are delighted at the news that The University of Akron has plans to fortify the academic experience for our students,” said Superintendent David James. “This is going to be an effective approach, we feel, to our students’ path toward higher learning. This is another great example of Akron building Akron.”
APS was designated a Ford Next Generation Learning Community in May 2017. Ford Motor Company Fund, the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company, is supporting the transformation of public high schools into career-themed academies to better prepare students for college and professional success in today's competitive global economy. Districts in the Ford NGL network have been shown to increase student achievement and engagement both at the high school and postsecondary levels and develop more robust ties between local educators and employers, generating a stronger talent-development pipeline for high-demand jobs and overall community prosperity.
College and Career Academies of Akron are supported by the following key strategic partners: GAR Foundation, United Way of Summit County, ConxusNEO, Summit Education Initiative and Greater Akron Chamber of Commerce. The collaboration between Akron Public Schools and The University of Akron was formed with the help of United Way of Summit County. United Way serves as a link between the College and Career Academies of Akron and local businesses to provide hands-on learning opportunities for students and to strengthen the education to employment pipeline in Summit County.
“Increasing college and career readiness among APS graduates is a key aspect of United Way’s work to build a better future for Greater Akron,” said Jim Mullen, president and CEO of United Way of Summit County. “This partnership brings together two of our community’s most important educational institutions. We are proud to be working with APS and The University of Akron to expand our children’s access to academic opportunities, so that they can grow into talented young professionals and active investors in our community.”
Media contact: Cristine Boyd, 330-972-6476 or cboyd @uakron.edu.