La Salle College High School: Introducing Their New ‘Concentrations Program’
The Concentrations Program will allow students to discover and pursue their passions through off-campus work, portfolios, capstone projects, and more.
La Salle College High School (Wyndmoor, PA) has launched a Concentrations Program that will allow students to embark on an innovative pathway where they can earn credentials and certifications in various career fields through coursework, electives, clubs, and experiential learning. These customized pathways will help student discover and pursue their passions.
Young men in a concentration will have the opportunity to take new electives and a seminar course. They will work off-campus, create portfolios, and complete capstone projects. The concept seeks to match the varied interests of La Salle students with the electives they chose.
By packaging current course offerings to create curricular pathways, La Salle will offer concentrations in IT Professional, Engineering, and Global Business.
The benefit of the program is that when young men do not have a reason or a goal or a target, they can lose focus, be adrift, and not really apply themselves. Students do not always have the long view, the sense of relevance, or the reason for learning a subject. Students often miss the learning links in front of them and connections that can be made. These concentrations give a young man a purpose and reason. Classes now matter to a student, and the long view comes into focus. Connections are made across subject areas and deeper more meaningful learning takes place.
La Salle’s principal, Jim Fyke, commented, “What La Salle is doing is defining pathways that students can take. More importantly, offering new opportunities. Already you see the potential of multiple avenues within a concentration that students can follow.”
La Salle has many elements of the initial concentrations already in place. Its unique and award-winning Lab Manager Program provides the opportunity for students to progressively develop IT skills through a mentoring program that services the school’s more than 1,200 network users. The concentrations program builds off that model, organizes it, expands it, and adds elements to deepen the learning even more.
The IT Professional Program brings new electives over a three-year period and provides working experience opportunities outside of the school as well, whether it is community service or actual internships. La Salle hopes to leverage its robust network of alums in key positions to place students, and not just for IT, but for Global Business and Engineering as well.
After the initial launch, one to three concentrations will be added each year to the program. Already under discussion are certifications in Health Professional (Doctor, Physician Assistant, Nurse, Trainer, Veterinarian), Music Professional, Data Analysis and Statistics, Digital Media and Marketing, and Non-Profit Management.
The genesis of the program was inspired internally and from what colleges and workplaces will be asking of students.
Fyke added, “While the organization of the program formalizes pathways, students will ultimately find their own paths from what they learn and experience. La Salle’s program aims to honor and encourage those pathways and recognize those students who are motivated to complete their concentrations journey.”
The program is open to all students, will deepen their understanding, and force them to grow in multiple dimensions as students and young men. It has inspired La Salle’s faculty and administration to look at its curriculum with new eyes, seeking more points of connection and relevancy. Participation in a concentration will provide a capable young man a spark, the spark that will ignite a new level of effort, thought, and commitment. It is not easy to develop expertise, but the concentrations program will allow students to explore opportunities and pursue their passion.
For information about the program and La Salle College High School, please visit lschs.org/admissions/visit.