Educating for the future
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Covering this range of activities is a consortium including Focus: HOPE and the Department of Computer Science at Wayne State University (WSU). Focus: HOPE recruits students through its established participation in inner city education activities. With 25 years experience in helping under-represented minorities gain access to careers, Focus: HOPE’s IMSE program enhances the probability of graduation success through support services.
IMSE provides "bridge" courses for incoming students, where basic competencies essential for academic success, such as mathematics and English, are reinforced. WSU provides an introduction to programming course. Focus: HOPE also mentors, counsels and assists those with practical problems of being an underfunded student.
IMSE produces a new breed of technology leader
Experiential learning on IT projects is included to enhance academic instruction. By enabling students to recognize the systemic nature of business and its underlying complex structure. By helping students to become "work ready" at graduation, students in the first bridge program were hired by Ford Motor Company to work in its IT department. The curriculum developed by WSU prepares students with the skills that are attractive to employers.
The program builds upon WSU’s bachelor's degree in Information Systems Technology that combines fundamental knowledge of computer science, systems design and business processes. In partnership with the Ford Motor Company, WSU includes a course in systems thinking, a holistic approach to business problem solving. An advisory committee with industry and academic participation monitors industry trends and recommends improvements to course content. Once students are employed, a community is set up to mentor graduates in continuing education, to stay abreast of developments in IT, and emerging employer skill needs.
There are currently 19 ITC alumni students enrolled in the WSU program through IMSE at Focus: HOPE. The first students were enrolled in the program in 2007. New students are enrolled annually. Experiential work opportunities exist through a variety of employers such as Next Energy, Wayne State University, Fast Switch and Vision IT, Ford Motor Company and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.
The components of the program mutually reinforce each other, forming a comprehensive learning support system intended to improve the rates for attracting qualified applicants for admittance, retention, graduation, and postgraduate employment placement.
We now have a small online gift shop that we hope to grow into a great shopping resource. You can purchase our photography book, notecards and a special t-shirt through the site. Also, Higher Grounds is producing an organic coffee that benefits Focus: HOPE.
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