2 high school students talking to Kauai C C staff

About 200 high school juniors and seniors and 40 staff members from seven high schools attended the annual Find Your Future event at Kauaʻi Community College in February. The college’s automotive program showcased an electric vehicle, electronics displayed circuit boards for students to experiment with, and the culinary program made ice cream with liquid nitrogen.

Students were able to get hands-on experiences with 11 programs, tour the campus and speak to Kauaʻi CC staff about next steps to apply for admission.

High school student trying electronic keyboard

“Figuring out college can be daunting and frankly overwhelming,” said Margaret Sanchez, interim chancellor. “The sheer pressure of assessments, applications, finances and just figuring out what one should do for the rest of their lives, can keep some students from applying to college altogether. To help reduce some of these barriers, Kauaʻi Community College offers a supportive onboarding process for high school students.”

Students pre-selected an area of study, which they got to explore further in break-out groups. The wide array of programs included automotive, botany/agriculture, business, carpentry, creative media, culinary arts, early childhood education, Hawaiian studies, hospitality and tourism, marine science, medical assisting, nursing and certified nurse aide, science and engineering. The event also featured a variety of support services available to Kauaʻi CC students.

“This event has been five years in the making,” said Registrar Kailana Soto. “We really hope to spark interest in the students about attending Kauaʻi CC.”

Transition Specialist Keanna Pavao said students can look forward to a series of visits from Kauaʻi CC staff throughout the remainder of the school year. These visits will include assistance with college and financial aid applications, admissions and class enrollment, and first year experience sign-ups. The intent is to provide high school seniors with everything they need to attend Kauaʻi CC, including registering for classes, before they graduate from high school.

“That way they can enjoy their summer, and then start at Kauaʻi CC in the fall with everything already taken care of,” Pavao said.

high school students taking food sample in Kauai CC kitchen