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Success in JMG Program Prepares Morse Senior for Life After High School
Success in JMG Program Prepares Morse Senior for Life After High School
Lauren Leeman-Hook
Wednesday, January 22, 2020

For Immediate Release: January 21, 2020

Media Contact: Lindsey Goudreau at 207-443-8330 or lgoudreau@cityofbath.com

Bath, ME (January 21, 2020) – When Konnor Rosano transferred to Morse High School as a Freshman he applied for JMG - a unique, one credit elective class taught by recently-awarded Fulbright recipient Maria Morris. Now a Senior, Rosano can reflect on the program that has provided him with the skills and confidence to be successful after graduation.   

 “I started out timid,” Rosano said, describing his introduction to JMG. “Before JMG I had no idea what I wanted to do (post high school), but now I’m narrowing it down to a few options.”

JMG, which stands for “Jobs for Maine’s Graduates” but is more commonly known by its acronym, has 143 programs across Maine which partner with public education and private businesses to ensure that all Maine students graduate, attain post-secondary credentials, and pursue meaningful careers. JMG’s programming is carried out by embedded school specialists like Morris, who has been teaching at Morse since 2008.

 “Ultimately our goal is to [help students] graduate high school,” said Morris. “We also want students to have choices [after graduation, including the ability to] participate in a meaningful career. To do that, we help them develop the skill sets needed to be successful, like clear and effective communication, work ethic, teamwork, and being able to step outside their comfort zone.”

This past summer, Rosano was one of only 25 students in the state to gain acceptance into JMG’s Summer Academy at Thomas College in Waterville. He took the weeklong personal finance course, worth three college credits, under the tutelage of JMG alumnus Professor Ryan Wheaton. Rosano, describing himself as an introvert, said that staying at the college was the first time he’d been away from home on his own, and that he was initially concerned the coursework would be too difficult. Facing these fears and his ultimate success in the class led him to more than a confidence boost – it also led to his selection as a speaker at the Morse JMG Opening Ceremony on November 14. 

“Each year at the Opening Ceremony we have student speakers,” Morris explained. “This year we had a storytelling theme, and Konnor was chosen to be one of the speakers." Rosano decided to write about his week at Thomas College. He wrote the speech, practiced, rehearsed, and, in Morris’ words, “knocked it out of the park.”

“I’m just so incredibly proud of Konnor,” she said. “When he came he was so quiet. But he bought into the program and set a goal to make the honor roll.” – A goal which he achieved.

 As graduation approaches, Rosano is considering several possible career paths, including authorship. To help him and other students gauge interest in different jobs, Morris is finishing out the year with a career planning unit and has arranged for Rosano to meet and interview a Maine author.

No matter what path he decides, Morris is confident of his future. 

“Doing everything he has done to challenge himself, I’m really confident that he will leave here in June in a good place,” she said.  

 

Jobs for Maine's Graduates (JMG) is a statewide nonprofit that works within Maine's public schools to help students reach their fullest potential. JMG serves more than 10,000 students in communities throughout all of Maine’s 16 counties. Students in JMG are full of potential, but face barriers to education. It is JMG's goal to provide these students with the skills and resources they need to overcome those challenges, and to graduate from high school prepared to succeed in postsecondary education and the workforce. Learn More: https://www.jmg.org/?fbclid=IwAR07kASR9n3t8tBMnK_d8r5oO-L9dg6k2vXZ8ricJKaLi9BwobfXln70Y_I