Students and parents across Genesee County gathered at the Genesee Career Institute (GCI) on Jan. 30 to familiarize themselves with the institute’s many comprehensive programs spanning numerous trade and collegiate fields including veterinary medicine, Computer-Aided Design, and cosmetology.
Deborah Davis, GCI’s principal, was one of the many faculty members escorting students through the building’s facilities. She explains how the ideal GCI candidate is usually a tenth grader since that allows them enough time to visit the institute, decide on their program, and attend classes there for two years before graduating.
Alyssa Decker, a sophomore attending Fenton High School visited GCI during the open house to learn more about the programs.
“I’m really looking into the cosmetology program, it looks really nice. It seems like they have a lot to offer,” she said. Decker plans on pursuing a career in cosmetology after high school. She says coming into a cosmetology program with two years of experience will really give her an edge.
Other students, like Hill McCloy high school sophomore Amy Marogy, are interested in GCI’s Medical Assistant and Medical Career Foundations programs, which offer the possibility of graduating with college credits towards majors like nursing. Marogy is looking forward to attending GCI and the opportunities it will offer her.
“I’m excited, I’m hoping that it gets me a really good job when I graduate,” said Marogy.
Davis mentioned that being on track to graduate is one of the largest factors in determining a candidate’s placement. Since attending GCI means taking a large chunk out of a student’s school day, those who apply must have the schedule necessary to receive their diploma while attending the institute.
“If you still need math and you still need science and you come here for half your day, now you can’t get those other credits.”
Previously known as the Genesee Area Skill Center, Davis wants GCI to be seen as more than a place for technical studies. While GCI is partnered with groups like the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, which helps students find apprenticeships after graduation, it also partners with colleges like Flint’s Mott Community College to offer graduates college credits.
This way, students looking to attend GCI can find something they’re interested in, whether they’re on the college track or planning on attending trade school.
Current interested freshmen in high school are encouraged to start thinking about GCI and its long list of programs. GCI will begin its new recruitment cycle across all 22 Genesee country school districts next Fall.
This piece was written as part of an underwriting series with Genesee Intermediate School District to promote an understanding of county-wide educational programming