OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Oklahoma state representatives will soon vote on a bill that would help high school students participate in apprenticeships and internships.
Sen. David Bullard authored Senate Bill 619 to allow sophomores who are 16-years-old or older to participate in the program created under the ‘Apprenticeships, Internships and Mentorships Act of 2016.’
“Students can only learn so much in books—they need real life experience to find what jobs, industries and careers they’re most interested in and in which they would be most successful,” Bullard said. “Schools are focused on teaching students basic subjects, but that doesn’t help them decide what they want to do the rest of their lives and what steps they need to take to pursue that career. This will give them real life experience, so they’ll know what additional training or high education they need to get into the field of their choice.”
Currently, the program is only open to juniors and seniors.
SB 619 would also direct the State Board of Education to review apprenticeships and internships to determine if they are eligible for academic credit toward meeting graduation requirements.
“The main goal with this bill is to help students be career ready after graduation. This program can help them find their passion and get them better prepared to enter the workforce after graduation or help them make better informed decisions about where to go to college and what to major in,” Bullard said. “Our kids need more than to know how to read and write, they need help figuring out how they can best utilize the skills they learn in high school to have a successful future.”
The bill was unanimously approved by the Senate Education Committee and then approved by the full Oklahoma Senate.
Now, the measure heads to the Oklahoma House of Representatives.