Wake Ed Partnership and Wake County Public Schools To Kick Off Summer Career Pathways Program

RALEIGH, N.C. — Career Accelerator, WakeEd Partnership’s career pathways summer program developed in partnership with Wake County Public Schools, kicks off on Monday, July 8th and runs through Friday, July 12th. More than 500 rising 10th – 12th graders will participate in this week-long full-day program that features real-world workplace experiences connecting students with employers to explore career pathways and opportunities.

WakeEd’s Career Accelerator program started in 2022 and has expanded each year with new school sites, business partners and program elements and incentives to serve even more students interested in this unique summer learning experience.

  • Expanded from 6 high school hub sites in 2022 to 23 schools in 2024 making the program accessible to more students across Wake County.
  • Began offering bus transportation to and from the high school hub sites to all students in 2023.
  • Began providing $150 stipend for all students who successfully completed the program in 2023.
  • Added a Career and College Expo closing event in 2023 for participants to meet potential employers and colleges.
  • Added a Keynote Speaker in 2024: Captain Barrington Irving from The Flying Classroom, a Jamaican-born American pilot who previously held the record for the youngest person to pilot a plane around the world solo in 2007. He is also the first black person and first Jamaican to accomplish this feat. Captain Irving will speak at 10:00 AM on Friday, July 12th at Enloe High School.

From Tuesday to Thursday of the program students will visit companies and organizations across Wake County that are offering career immersions in their workplaces. In addition to immersion experiences, students will receive coaching and instruction in other workforce development areas at the high school sites, such as online portfolio and resume building, social media use and interviewing skills featuring guest speakers from across the Triangle.

On Friday, July 12th there will be a Career and College Expo at Enloe High School for all students who participated featuring businesses and local colleges and universities. Before the Expo, participants will hear from Keynote Speaker, Captain Barrington Irvington.

“These businesses really stepped up to provide amazing workplace immersions for our students,” said Keith Poston, President, WakeEd Partnership. “Business leaders should know the future workforce is here and graduating from Wake County Public Schools. Career Accelerator will allow students to see first-hand what kinds of jobs and careers are available and most importantly the path to get there.”

“Career Accelerator is both a showcase for companies who need skilled workers and for these motivated students who chose to spend part of their summer learning about career opportunities,” added Poston.

The following companies and organizations hosting career immersions at their workplaces:

  • Albright Entrepreneurship Garage    
  • American Red Cross   
  • Boon Edam    
  • Brasfield & Gorrie      
  • Carolina Mudcats       
  • Cisco   
  • Deutsche Bank           
  • EPA     
  • Extron
  • Home Ownership with Sam   
  • iPearl  
  • John Deere     
  • Lenovo
  • Merz   
  • Muter Construction   
  • North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences
  • Parker LORD   
  • Pinnacle Bank
  • Raleigh Firebirds        
  • Raleigh Founded        
  • RTI      
  • TS Designs      
  • UCB    
  • UNC Health    
  • Wake Tech Community College
  • Welcome Federal Credit Union         
  • Whiting-Turner          
  • William Peace University       
  • Wolfspeed     

MEDIA ADVISORY: Members of the media who wish to attend one of the workplace immersions please contact Keith Poston at WakeEd Partnership at 919-780-5205 or kposton@wakeed.org to coordinate access.

About WakeEd Partnership 
WakeEd Partnership (WakeEd) is a leading independent nonprofit backed by business and community leaders to support the teachers, students, and families of Wake County Public Schools. Since 1983, WakeEd has been committed to improving public education and advocating for excellent educational opportunities for all students. For more information, please visit www.wakeed.org.

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