A new division has been created in the Project Explore Program at the Center for Instruction, Technology and Innovation, allowing participating students the opportunity to gain valuable experience in the areas of production and retail services.
Students and staff recently held the grand opening of Retail CiTi, a new store that will sell student-created merchandise such as seasonal crafts, wooden crafts and specialty items.
In addition to making the products, students will also operate the store and ensure everything runs smoothly.
PEP provides students with an opportunity to explore various mediums, encouraging interest in both school and vocational programming.
The program provides students with a variety of educational options, including Common Core academics and a strong emphasis on entry-level job skills.
The addition of the retail store will allow students to exit the program with an employability profile and portfolio, said instructor Helen Perth.
“As a teenager, retail is a lot of the jobs they have,” Perth said. “We’re trying to bring in all the pieces to a meaningful learning experience.”
PEP student Crystal Tibbles called the retail store a “unique” experience.
“I think it is neat because we get to build things,” she said.
Perth said the opening of Retail CiTi would not have been possible without the help of teachers Carolyn Petrocci, Dave Proietti and K.C. Jones.
The store is open on Fridays from 9 to 11 a.m. and from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. in the S330 manufacturing shop.