The student news site of Everett Community College in Everett, Washington

The Clipper

The student news site of Everett Community College in Everett, Washington

The Clipper

The student news site of Everett Community College in Everett, Washington

The Clipper

Youth Re-Engagement Program helping students get back on track

Jeff Sass
Rebecca Hungerford, Director of the Youth Re-Engagement program.

The Youth Re-Engagement (U3) program offers students an alternative to the standard high school experience while allowing others a second chance to finish their education, free of charge.

The U3 program is available for students ages 16 to 21 who do not have a high school diploma. Students can earn dual credits which go toward both a diploma or GED and an associate degree, technical or vocational certificate.

“The (program) is different in so many ways. One of the biggest (differences) here is that the student is in charge,” said Rebecca Hungerford, director of the Youth Re-Engagement program.

All tuition, books, fees and supplies are funded by EvCC in partnership with multiple Snohomish County school districts.

Story continues below advertisement

“Having somebody not only pay the tuition, but (for) the stuff that you need for your classes too, it can be huge,” Hungerford said.

Each student will be assigned a case manager who will guide them through their academic career. Most newly enrolled students start out taking a foundational course during their first quarter, consisting of computer literacy, exploring different careers and being successful in college.

“They get to choose what their goal is, what they want to pursue… It’s not our job to make choices for them… and that is very different from (normal) high school, where you are told to take this class and this class.”

Youth Re-Engagement is part of the Washington State Open Doors program. Intended for those who are behind in high school credits or have lost interest in education, the program’s goal is to reinvigorate students’ desire to learn and help them succeed.

“Since switching to the Open Doors model, we have had more freedom to tailor the program to each individual student. That way students can tell us what works for them; whether they take one class or four, in person or online and if they go at night or in the morning,” Hungerford said. “There is a lot more flexibility as far as trying to have a job or managing family responsibilities while going to school.”

Students participating have a similar success rate in regard to completion and retention when compared to the general college population. Last June, the U3 program had 40 students earn their diploma, GED, degree or certificate.

The amount of time to complete the U3 program varies depending on each student’s personal goals.

“For a student who wants to earn their degree, it is probably between two to three years. The students that are just looking to finish their diploma or want to do some of the short-term certificate programs, they can be here for a shorter amount of time,” Hungerford said.

With about 175 students currently enrolled in Youth Re-Engagement, there are limited spaces available. In Fall 2023, they took in over 60 new students. Only 36 spots remain available for Winter quarter.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Jeff Sass
Jeff Sass, News Editor
What interests you about journalism? I believe journalism can offer me a career that I am passionate about. I hope I can try to help change the world by reporting on current events and holding powerful people accountable for their actions. What is an issue or topic you are interested about? Politics. Over the past few years, I have been paying more attention to what has been occurring on a state and federal level involving the government. While doing this, I discovered that if I wanted to try to change anything, I needed to participate in voting on issues and elections. I always try to keep myself informed on current issues in order to help me decide which way I will vote. When you aren't doing things for the Clipper, what can you be found doing? I love to play video games.  The genres I enjoy playing are RPG and Action/Adventure games. Also, I go fishing for salmon and crab with my dad out in Puget Sound.

Comments (0)

All The Clipper Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *