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Tuesday, October 9, 2012

‘Close the Deal’ program launches at Bullitt Central to encourage higher education

“Close the Deal,” a state pilot program challenging seniors to pursue additional education after they graduate, has launched at Bullitt Central High School.

Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson joined local officials, educators and the business community to announce the program launch on Oct. 9.

The Close the Deal initiative creates a college-going culture in high schools for students who aren’t yet considering higher education. The program supports high school counselors, and engages the business and postsecondary communities in helping these students attain further education past high school.

Abramson said like him, many of these students will be first generation college-goers.

At today’s Close Deal launch, seniors met with college representatives regarding how to apply for admission and financial aid, while local business leaders outlined the skills needed for current and future opportunities.

The successful launch of Close the Deal at Bullitt Central High School is due to the partnership between state and local officials, educators and business leaders who want seniors to pursue higher education, “whether through community college for a certificate or a two-year associate degree, or a traditional four-year university,” Abramson said.

“We have incredibly able students at Bullitt Central High School,” said Bullitt County Superintendent Keith Davis. “I believe that the level of community encouragement provided by Close the Deal can help them – especially the first generation college student – take the next important step in their academic career and life.”

“Participating in Close the Deal will help our students get fired up about their future,” said Bullitt Central High School Principal Christy Coulter. “We are committed to helping each student find their way to college and a productive life.”

Officials at Bullitt Central High School will continue to work with seniors throughout the school year, further educating them on the need for additional education upon graduation. Through Close the Deal, counselors will encourage students to apply to at least one college or university.

In taking Close the Deal statewide, Abramson formed a partnership with the Kentucky Department of Education to add the program to the department’s “Operation Preparation” initiative.

Operation Preparation was launched in March and combines the efforts of the Department of Education and the Education and Workforce Development Cabinet to discuss life after high school with students.

Lt. Gov. Abramson will join local officials to launch Close the Deal at Lawrence County High School, on Oct. 22. He helped launch the program at Campbell County High School last week. Abramson said he is hopeful that additional high schools will join the program in the coming years.

For more information about Close the Deal in Kentucky, click here.

From the Office of Kentucky Lt. Gov.