July 1, 2022

Jackson Launch Program Creates Significant Impact


Jackson County, AL (July 1, 2022) Jackson Launch is a unique Educational/Workforce Development program that provides Junior and Senior high school students a real-world career learning opportunity to learn and earn at the same time. The goal of the Jackson Launch program is to provide every student an opportunity to a career that best fits them as well as provides business and industry a pipeline of trained and certified potential employees. Whatever path the student may take, the objective is to provide them an opportunity to a fulfilling and meaningful potential career.
This is a county wide educational and workforce development program developed for all students in Jackson County. Students are chosen for this program primarily based on their interest in a longtime career for a specific career path. Students gain invaluable hands-on training about being productive at work, being responsible, teamwork, and problem solving.

During its inaugural 2021-2022 school year, Jackson Launch witnessed great success. Average student wages earned increased approximately $65K with an hourly increase of $1.30 with an expanded economic impact of more than $450K during the first year of implementation.
2021-2022 Work-Based Learning Stats:

Total students enrolled (unduplicated): 105
Total student hours worked (Apprenticeships): 55,551
Total student wages earned: $564,410
Total economic impact: $3,950,870
Class average wage: $10.16/hour

This program was developed for each company to grow their own talent for the future. Johns Manville, a leading manufacturing company in Scottsboro, is one business partner that has been delighted at its success. “I have hired two students currently with the goal to hire two more, soon.” said Terry Couch, Plant Manager, adding, “We are the only Johns Manville plant across the country with high school students.”

After the initial first year or two years of work, students with an interest in maintenance, welding, electrical operations or even engineering and computer science, can be placed for job shadowing opportunities in areas of the company outside of production. The companies have the option to offer the graduates full time positions and/or allow them a work schedule that enables the student to pursue an associate degree and additional certifications at Northeast Alabama Community College (NACC) while continuing to work.

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