Opening students up to Close the Deal

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By Amy Wallot
amy.wallot@education.ky.gov

Every time I attend a Close the Deal event, no matter where in the state, I hear the same thing from the adults there.

“I wish they had something like this when I was in school.”

It is a day set aside for seniors to go beyond the theoretical idea of attending college, to learning the steps on how to actually make it happen.

The entire senior class meets in the school gymnasium, where students are separated into small groups. Each group is then spoken to by a representative of college admissions, the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority and a local business person. They discuss how to pay for college, what college life is like and what qualifications and skills hiring managers look for. After lunch, the students attend a college fair where they can visit booths of public and private schools and military recruiters.

This year I attended the event, an initiative created by Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson, at Breathitt County High School. Other schools participating in Close the Deal this year are Ohio County High School, Campbellsville High School (Campbellsville Independent) and Livingston Central High School (Livingston County).

Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson encourages Katie Watts and Bill Johnson to consider attending Berea College during the Close The Deal event at Breathitt County High School. Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson encourages Katie Watts and Bill Johnson to consider attending Berea College during the Close the Deal event at Breathitt County High School.
Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
Senior Michael Hildebrand talks with Alice Lloyd College admissions counselor Mary Turner. Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
Senior Michael Hildebrand talks with Alice Lloyd College admissions counselor Mary Turner.
Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
Stephen Bowling, vice mayor of Jackson, encourages students to come back to Breathitt County after college to help make a difference in their community. Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
Stephen Bowling, vice mayor of Jackson, encourages students to come back to Breathitt County after college to help make a difference in their community.
Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
Senior Hayley Curtis plans to study nursing. Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
Senior Hayley Curtis plans to study nursing.
Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
Marine recruiter Sgt. James Pardue and members of the Breathitt County JROTC share what the different patches and pins represent on their uniforms. Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
Marine recruiter Sgt. James Pardue and members of the Breathitt County JROTC share what the different patches and pins represent on their uniforms.
Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
JROTC student Dennis Kerley invites Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson to be a guest speaker at the military ball. Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014
JROTC student Dennis Kerley invites Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson to be a guest speaker at the military ball.
Photo by Amy Wallot, Oct. 7, 2014

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