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Seniors' interests are far-reaching

Students are always dreaming about the possibilities. This year, 68 Pine River-Backus seniors will walk across the stage and receive their diplomas as the PR-B Class of 2013.

These students will be starting the next phase of their dreams.

Here at Pine River-Backus students really begin their post-secondary planning as early as ninth grade. We use the Minnesota Career Information Systems (MCIS) to explore career options. The assessment actually demonstrates a student’s strengths and interests and will develop a pathway to success. We use the data to develop individual learning plans and set specific goals for each student.

This year our seniors have varied post-secondary interests. Twenty-nine students plan to attend four-year programs at many different colleges and universities. This fall, PR-B students will arrive at schools like the University of Minnesota, Duluth and Twin Cities; Minnesota State University, Moorhead; Bemidji State University; University of Wisconsin; and North Dakota State University, along with Concordia and Bethel.

Students plan to study things like pre-med, engineering, nursing, business, communications, social work/law enforcement, journalism, theatre and education. Our world will be a better place for these students’ efforts and for our students’ dreams.

Many other students have two-year plans with their options open to a four-year degree should they be interested. A vast majority of our students will attend Central Lakes College, our regional partner and our College in the Schools host.

Students attending CLC will study sign language, nursing, dental assistant, generals, radiology and auto mechanics. Again, PR-B promotes more services and opportunities for our community and students.

We also have students attending Alexandria Technical College for criminal justice; Hibbing Community College for sports, personal training and social work; Wadena Technical College for massage therapy; Northland Technical for photography; Staples Technical for heating and air conditioning; Vermillion for conservation and land surveying; Ridgewater College for veterinarian; Lake Superior College for psychology; Anoka Ramsey for communications; Rasmussen Community College for game and simulation programming; and the Institute of Production and Recording for audio engineering.

You can see that our students’ interests are far-reaching!

Several students are enlisting in the Marines and Air Force. And, some students have plans to get into the world of work immediately. Some are getting into retail, resorts and even the post office! One young man has a job promise from Nike once he graduates.

As students work their way through their high school programs, we make sure they have the skills and courses needed to graduate and, more importantly, the background they need to bring them along their chosen career path. In addition, students must meet credit and testing requirements in order to get a PR-B diploma.

Our students take a Careers Class that allows them to think about the possibilities, but also provides sound information regarding what it takes to get where they’re going.

As you can see, the Class of 2013 has been very successful in making progress toward many different fields in many different areas. Student dreams are coming true!

Be sure to do what you can to support them as they take their first steps outside of PR-B.

(Mary Ruth Sigan is a Pine River-Backus High School counselor.)

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
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