Muskegon Community Educational Center honored for work with youth

The Muskegon Community Educational Center (MCEC), an alternative high school that is part of the Muskegon Public Schools, was recently recognized by West Michigan Works! as its 2023 Partner of the Year.

The accolade celebrates MCEC’s collaboration in supporting youth through career exploration and work experience. It was presented during the annual West Michigan Works! board meeting held at the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park on Dec. 11.

MCEC and West Michigan Works! partner on the Career Passport Exploration program, where career coaches teach work-ready core competencies and employability skills to MCEC youth. 

The program celebrates student accomplishments with a passport stamp upon completion of each topic. Of those who completed the eight-week course, 92% said they would recommend the program to others. 

‘Commitment to career readiness’

“MCEC’s partnership is instrumental in equipping our youth with the necessary skills and resources to succeed, regardless of the challenges they face,” says Chad Patton, development and innovation director of West Michigan Works!. “Their collaboration with Muskegon Public Schools and advocacy for inclusive career tech education is a testament to their commitment to career readiness.”

Chauncy R. Williams receives the 2023 Partner of the Year award for MCEC.

MCEC extends its impact to other middle and high school students in Muskegon Public Schools by focusing on career readiness before senior year.

Its partnership with West Michigan Works! has led to career exploration and work experience programs like Career Passport Exploration, MI Career Launch, Ascend Youth Summer Work Experience, and MiCareerQuest.  

MCEC works with career coaches to guide students into these programs, emphasizing employability skills training and innovative program development. Its mission aligns with the goals of the West Michigan Works! Ascend program, which provides youth with expanded career awareness, exploration, and guidance.

"Muskegon Community Educational Center has become a pivotal force in shaping the future of our youth," says Chauncy R. Williams, career and college facilitator for Muskegon Public Schools. "We are committed to providing an innovative educational experience that aligns perfectly with the ethos of a collaborative community at the heart of student learning."
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Read more articles by Shandra Martinez.