It was day one for the Frederick Douglass high school class of 2021 Wednesday, but 62 of the incoming freshmen are on track to leave high school four years from now with an associate's college degree to go along with their high school diplomas.
The 14-year-old students are among the first in Maryland to enroll in six new Pathways in Technology Early College High Schools designated by the Maryland Department of Education in Prince George's County, Baltimore City, and Allegany County.
P-Tech schools partner with their area's community colleges to provide students with college course work while they are still attending high school with the goal of graduating them with an associates degree and professional certifications to enter the work force early, or to continue their educations at four-year colleges.
In addition, corporate sponsors support students with mentoring, internships and the promise that they will be first-in-line for job openings once they have completed the program.
At Douglass, Marriott is providing pathways to management positions in the hospitality industry. Medstar Health is supporting programs that will lead students into health care technology management.
Maryland's department of education is providing $750 per-student annually to fund the program. The grants are matched with money from Prince George's County Public Schools .
P-Tech was pioneered by schools in Brooklyn, New York in partnership with IBM.