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Embracing Fear: How Moving Can Help

We are moving. It is a phrase that can bring instant stress to even the tranquil people. Moving is part of life, however it does not mean it is anyone’s favorite thing.

Students at Tulsa Tech’s Career Academy embrace the uncertainty. These students were, at one time, looking for an environment more suited to their educational needs. It is their opportunity to take a step toward independence.

“Career Academy has changed my life,” Isaiah Dean, a Career Academy graduate said with a smile. “Coming here was the best decision I have made. It was a life-saving choice and I am grateful to have this opportunity.”

Career Academy is designed to help at-risk students get the education they need. Throughout the program, students complete their high school coursework under Tulsa Tech instructors and can still walk at their home high schools’ graduation commencement ceremony.  Studies have shown dropouts earn over ten thousand dollars per year less than those with a high school diploma. 

The decision to switch schools opened Dean to a new world, full of new people, new friends and a clearer picture of where he wants to go in life. Inside the red brick buildings at the Lemley Memorial Campus, Dean and other students at the Career Academy find more than instructors, they find a team of people passionate about helping them succeed.

“The environment here is wonderful because you are surrounded by a group of family that cares,” Dean said. “Everyone here is so supportive, the energy level is much higher and everyone is so loving.”

This school year, it is not just the students that are moving, but the entire Career Academy is moving to the Peoria Campus. The change is clearing the way for the third phase of Lemley Campus renovations, creating more opportunities for students across the region. While the move will mean a change in scenery, it won’t mean a change in culture.

Career Academy is governed by four principles:

  • Respect Yourself
  • Respect Others
  • Respect Career Academy
  • Respect the Law

These guiding principles are based on helping students grow as people and breaking down barriers. The Career Academy aspires to create a new and lifelong family to help students even after they complete their coursework.

“I feel like I have people I can go to if I ever need help or anything,” Dean said, smiling. “Tulsa Tech has opened up my eyes to where I want to go in life and where I want to be in my future.”

A future that he hopes will include earning a paramedic certification and a place with the Tulsa Fire Department. A dream Dean says would not have been possible if he didn’t make the move and seize the opportunity to attend Career Academy.

“Whenever you are here, you are given an opportunity to change your life,” Dean said. “Making that commitment to want to better myself is the decision that will impact me for years to come.”