Building an Early Resume: Agora Students Earn Microsoft Certifications
In only a short amount of time, Lynn Wilson, Agora Destinations Career Academy administrator, has seen the incredible potential for Agora students to earn Microsoft certifications that will help build both skills and resumes. Through Destinations Career Academy or by selecting classes as an elective, Agora students can earn certifications in Microsoft Office programs.
These classes help students gain real-world skills, whether the next step is college, career or both. In Microsoft 1 and 2, students learn the ins and outs of Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel and Outlook. At the end of the class, students can earn Microsoft certifications, which they can take with them anywhere they go in life. In fact, students have already earned 62 certifications this year.
“We have seen students thriving in these classes, and watching them get certified is beyond fulfilling,” said Lynn.
Collaboration in these classes is key, just as in the workplace, and students can carry the skills they learn wherever they go. Agora high school teacher Charly Lynn teaches the Microsoft Office courses. The classes are a part of all three of the DCA pathways because they are useful in any industry. Plus, when it comes to earning certifications, Agora has a site license, so there is no cost to families to take or retake the tests.
“It is important that students realize that certification is attainable,” said Charly. They have the ability to walk out of high school with a credential showing they have advanced skills.”
When Hiram, a 10th-grade student from Philadelphia, heard about Microsoft Office through an assembly, he got excited about the opportunity to earn certifications. He was a bit intimidated at first, but Hiram immediately saw how much he could benefit, so he decided to give the class a try last school year. In that short time, Hiram completed Microsoft Office 1 and 2, and has already attained six Microsoft certifications.
“Looking back on it, I am so grateful that I made the decision to attend that assembly and enroll in these classes,” said Hiram. “Almost everything I now know about Microsoft Office came from this program, and my favorite part is the certifications. The fact that they are free and can be taken from home means the world to me.”
Hiram’s experience at Agora began in third grade, after choosing to attend school from the safety of his own home. The flexibility of his day and his synchronous classes have set him up for success, and he is thriving. Receiving A’s on his report card is now the norm, and he has really learned to budget his time. The Agora experience has set him up for success after high school, but the extra time has also allowed Hiram to take his Microsoft certifications to the next level, completing expert-level courses on his own.
“It felt like a dream, and I was overwhelmed with happiness and hope when I was able to earn my first certification, a Word associate certification,” continued Hiram. “This success, along with the convenience and structure of this program, motivated me to focus and tackle more challenging exams like PowerPoint, Word expert and Access. Overall, I am so happy and grateful that this program exists, and I am so excited to become a Microsoft Office Specialist!”
Hiram is interested in healthcare and wants to go to college after graduation in two years. He plans to use his new skills to start in the health informatics field, which he will use as a bridge to his ultimate goal of becoming a family doctor.
“Hiram was one of the first students to be certified in Word this year, and he quickly took it upon himself to work through extra courses in our LearnKey/GMetrix programs,” said Charly. “I am so proud of him and all that he has already accomplished. It’s great to see the kind of impact these classes can have on the futures of our students.”