12 On Tour: Preparing Kids for the Real World Through the Mentor Program

When you started high school did you know what you wanted to do in life? Most of us don't, but there's a program at Central High School in Lowndes County that's preparing its kids for the big world after high school.

The kids at Central High School are paying close attention and students are learning about all sorts of jobs on career day. This is just a small part of what they call their "advisory class", a program with one simple goal according to Guidance Councelor Sheryl Nelson. "To prepare our students for the real world after the high school," she explains.

It starts when they're freshman. Each student gets a teacher who will be their mentor for the next four years. "If they're having any problems they have a trusted adult they know they can go to," says Nelson.

They learn how to put together resumes, check their transcripts, apply to colleges and that's just part of it! Central High Junior Tracy White explains, "You got to stay organized. In my class I have to keep my notes from 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th grade."

Brittany Hyde is a sophomore at Central,"We had a self assessment so I learned more about myself," she tells us, "I learned I'm not that competitive so I don't need to be a stock broker."

For some older students, like senior Jermichael Rudolph, the program has already pointed them toward the future. "My plans are to attend Nashville Automotive College in Tennessee."

Others, like freshman Keirra King, are just getting started. "As for me being a freshman...he has given me a better idea of how to come up with goals..." she says of her mentor.

It's a four year class where the reward can be much bigger than a good grade. Something called the "Big Picture Project" makes sure these students get the big picture. Every kid puts their goals on one side of a poster and as freshmen they take a graduation picture to remind them of what they'll look like in a cap and gown.

Who knows, one of these kids might be the next Deputy Distric Attorney in Montgomery County. The possibilties are endless, and thanks to the advisory class they will be prepared.

The students go to their advisory class once every two weeks and have constant access to their teacher mentors.