Vincennes University Jasper helps high school students explore local job opportunities

Vincennes University Jasper helps high school students explore local job opportunities

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October 24, 2019

October 24, 2019 / Vincennes University Jasper helps high school students explore local job opportunities

JASPER, Ind. — Vincennes University Jasper recently partnered with local businesses and organizations to provide more than 550 high school students with a first-hand exploration of job opportunities in Dubois County.

During the daylong Tour of Opportunity, students from four Dubois County school corporations learned about career choices such as information technology, agriculture, advanced manufacturing, law enforcement, and building trades.

Students interacted with VU Jasper administrators and instructors along with industry experts throughout the day. They completed a skills assessment test and participated in hands-on activities such as brick laying.

“It’s a lot more difficult than I thought it would be,” Will Gubbins, a Jasper High School student, said while trying to place mortar on a layer of brick.

At VU Jasper’s Center for Technology, Innovation, and Manufacturing, Rick Applegate, owner of Precision Farming Solutions, explained the role of drones and other technology in agriculture. He also gave students the opportunity to operate a planter simulation.

VU Jasper student Dennis Tedrow told the younger students about an important lesson he learned about higher education: For many students, larger schools aren’t the best path. He said large class sizes at the private university he formerly attended made it difficult to interact with professors.  The cost of tuition and other school expenses also was considerably more expensive than at VU Jasper.

VU Jasper, Dubois Strong, Hub19, the Patoka Valley Co-op, and the four Dubois County school corporations collaborated on planning the Tour of Opportunity.

The Tour of Opportunity is an example of VU Jasper’s efforts to connect students to local industry in hopes of meeting the wide variety of future workforce needs. At day’s end, students went home with hands-on experience in important local trades, new-found knowledge of these trades, and access to future opportunities through Vincennes University Jasper.


Jacob Berg

Director, Center for Technology, Innovation and Manufacturing


The Vincennes University Jasper Campus is a vital part of Indiana’s first college, Vincennes University. The Jasper Campus fulfills the vision of CoHERE, a Dubois County citizens group founded in 1960, that was dedicated to improving area education and cultural enrichment. Vincennes University joined as a strong partner, opening a Jasper location in 1970.

VU Jasper features a beautiful 140-acre campus on the southeast side of Jasper. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, VUJ tuition and fees rank among the most affordable of all Indiana colleges. In addition to offering associate degree and certificate programs, VUJ students can complete a bachelor’s degree online or at the Vincennes Campus.

VU Jasper’s Center for Technology, Innovation and Manufacturing is a hub for community engagement in local education. It is home to the Career Advancement Partnership (CAP) program, a major workforce development initiative between VUJ and local manufacturing companies. It also houses several programs for the Patoka Valley Career and Technical Education Cooperative, including a new Automation and Robotics Academy.

In addition to the CTIM, other campus facilities include the Alvin C. Ruxer Student Center, Arnold F. Habig Library Learning Center, Administrative Classroom Building, and a Jasper Campus Classroom Building that holds a state-of-the-art simulation laboratory for healthcare training. Adjacent to the campus is the Jasper Arts Center, which includes a 675-seat theater and visual arts galleries.

The VU Jasper Campus serves thousands of students in Dubois, Spencer, Martin, Perry, Crawford, Harrison, Pike, Orange, Daviess, Lawrence and surrounding counties in Indiana.


Vincennes University Newsroom

MARCIA MARTINEZ, University Life Reporter & Sports Information Director
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VINCENNES UNIVERSITY, Department of University Relations,