NEW BEDFORD – Through a three-year, $144,500 Museums for America grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the New Bedford Whaling Museum will augment its New Bedford High School apprenticeship program.
Sarah Rose, the museum’s vice president of education and programs, said the IMLS grant is integral to expanding the program to high school sophomores and prioritizing career readiness in local youth.
“Thanks to this grant, the museum is better positioned to help students move past common obstacles as they transition to postsecondary education and earn degrees that lead to career success,” she said in a statement.
Expansion to be undertaken through this funding will include opening up the program to sophomores through a three-year curriculum that prioritizes academic achievement, college readiness and career exploration. In addition, support systems will be established at Bristol Community College, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and Bridgewater State University.
The museum’s apprenticeship program, which is in its seventh year and has graduated 47 students with a 100 percent track record of enrolling in college or the military, was one of 206 successful applicants of the 548 that vied for the IMLS grant. Aimed at disadvantaged high school students, the apprenticeship program helps students gain professional experience by guiding tours and participating in public programming while engaging in college and career readiness activities.