More and more high schools are attempting to prepare their students for college by offering college-level classes in the high school or allowing students to learn from a college professor by streaming the college class to a building on the high school grounds.
NS is involved with Snow College in these endeavors. They have a new program, called Building Trades, which allows high school students to drive to Snow College and take a class on the Ephraim campus. Once they have learned enough, the students will begin practicing the trade they have been studying.
Senior Waylen Atkinson is the only NS student who is currently involved in the Building Trades program, in the Construction Management section, and is enrolled in the Framing Methods class. According to Atkinson, he has learned “wall layout, like load-bearing walls, how to build a certain wall a certain way, how wide you can have your studs for how much weight they’re holding,” and so on.
Framing Methods has only six students in it, including Atkinson. At the beginning of the class Atkinson would drive down to Snow College for the class, but the students now frame houses. They are currently working on a basement in Moroni.
“I thought it would be a lot of work for only six people, but it’s really not,” Atkinson said. “We each get a wall, pretty much, and just build it from the ground up.”
Once the basement is finished, the class will move and work on a garage in Ephraim.
The skills Atkinson has learned in class have helped him outside of school already, as he has been able to help two of his uncles with additions to their own homes. Additionally, Atkinson plans on becoming an architectural engineer, and believes Framing Methods is helping prepare him for that.
“An architectural engineer draws the houses and actually designs houses,” Atkinson said. “You can make it easier for people that are framing houses and dry walling houses and stuff like that, because you’d make walls a certain length so you don’t have to waste more wood.”
Besides helping students decide on and begin pursuing their future career, allowing students to take college classes while still in high school makes college less unnerving.
“I was kind of nervous that [college] was going to be hard to get used to and the work was going to be really hard, but it’s really not too hard of a transition to make,” Atkinson said.
Additionally, high school students are able to realize that college students aren’t as different from them.
“It was kind of weird being in the class with college students because they’re just like us,” Atkinson said. “You know they’re older and some of them are more mature, but a lot of them act just like high school students.”
Although at present Atkinson is the only student who is participating in the Building Trades program, NS is hoping to open up many more programs to students. One of the things NS wants to do is work with the Snow College-Richfield campus in allowing students to travel and take classes on their campus. Because of the commute, NS wants to make it possible for students to stay overnight in Richfield, or to arrange transportation for them.