High school students Genna Leeson and Jillian Kofoed take a peek at an engine during a tour of the Northwest Community College campus July 13.

High school students Genna Leeson and Jillian Kofoed take a peek at an engine during a tour of the Northwest Community College campus July 13.

High school students test drive college life

High school students got a taste of college life last week when 29 of them came for a two-night stay at Terrace’s Northwest Community College (NWCC).

High school students got a taste of college life last week when 29 of them came for a two-night stay at Terrace’s Northwest Community College (NWCC).

The project was called Test Drive NWCC and was offered to  any high school student interested.

Representatives from NWCC met with career counsellors at schools from all over the Coast Mountains school district and students from the Nass Valley were invited to attend.

Two of the students even came from as far as Ontario.

The students arrived for a dinner and orientation July 12 where they received a tour of the campus.

Following a night spent in the college dorms, students were broken up into groups where they covered a variety of different topics including anthropology, health sciences, geology, trades, ecology, university writing and team building.

Holly Hovland, an educational advisor at NWCC, said the students were a little shy to begin with but were quickly engaging really well together.

She said the program is meant to provide the full experience of college life.

“We had the whole experience,” she said, referring to the first night spent in the dorms.

Hovland explained the idea is to take the fear out of post secondary life and show students it is really manageable and the college is on hand to help.

One of the Ontario students, Jillian Kofoed, said she liked the program.

She explained they covered a lot of topics, including financial advice.

“It was a really great experience, I would recommend it for kids who are a little bit nervous,” she said.

Hovland said initially Test Drive NWCC had room for 50 students, but have found the current number of 29 to be just right.

She said next year the college definitely plans to run the program again, possibly next time in two groups of 30.

Hovland said the college is getting a lot of feedback from the students, as this was the pilot year of the project and it wants to know how to fine-tune the program for next year.

“We’re pretty excited, it’s been a learning experience,” she said.

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