Plan for your Future Through OptIN and Ivy Tech
Ivy Tech Community College is proud to work with the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation’s OptIN program to help students to graduate from high school with a college credential or degree in a high-demand field in the community, or be well on their way.
Students can choose from career pathways in:
- Industrial Electrical
- Industrial Mechanical
- Interdisciplinary Industrial Workforce
- Process Operations
- Manufacturing and Process Operations
Advanced Automation and Robotics Technology
- Mechatronics Level 1
- Information Tech Support
- Network Penetration
- Network Security
- Digital Forensics
- Server Administration
- Medical Office Administration
- Phlebotomy Technician
- Outpatient Insurance Billing Coding
- Supply Chain Management Logistics
Opportunities through Partnerships that Transform and Inspire (OptIN), in conjunction with Ivy Tech’s College Connection Coaches, will work with students and parents to identify student interests and college classes offered either through dual credit or dual enrollment. They will then develop a career pathway plan over the 4 years of high school so the student will enter the community after graduation with skills and college credentials, and be trained and ready for the workforce.
In a news conference on Dec. 19, 2017, EVSC’s Superintendent David Smith said OptIN will also help fill open positions in our community. “OptIN will focus on extending and expanding options for all students,” Smith said. “We have students with incredible promise and we have first-rate employers that are not able to fill high-wage, high-demand positions. OptIN will connect students’ passion and interests with open positions in our community by ensuring our students have the education and transferable skills necessary for today’s workforce.”
According to the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, Research & Analysis, by year 2024 there will be 78,200 unfilled jobs in the Evansville area alone. Of those, nearly 75 percent will require either a high school diploma, postsecondary certification, or four-year degree. Evansville also mimics some of the same trends seen nationally. The 2016-2017 U. S. Talent Shortage Survey revealed some of the most difficult-to-fill jobs in the nation are skilled trades, health care workers, teachers and technicians. These are also high-demand job opportunities in the Evansville region.
Ivy Tech Chancellor Jonathan Weinzapfel said Ivy Tech is ideally situated to assist students. OptIN would make use of dual credit courses in place in the schools, as well as dual enrollment courses at Ivy Tech to get students on a career pathway and earning college credentials.
Smith added, “As a community, our thinking has to change regarding how we define postsecondary success. We certainly will continue to support students who choose to pursue a four-year degree, but we also have to realize that students can be extremely successful in a host of careers that build upon students’ skills and interests.”
OptIN is led by Executive Director B. J. Watts, most recently an EVSC teacher. Watts has served as the Governor’s Appointee to the Indiana State Board of Education since 2011. Alex Burton, OptIN program manager, is working one-on-one with students to help them identify interests and develop the skills necessary to be successful.
To learn more, call 812-429-1435