MET Academy Continues Partnership with Local Businesses During Pandemic
Even in a pandemic, Peoria Unified’s Medical Engineering Technology (MET) Professional Academy students are continuing their partnership with local business partners, which provides students the opportunity to engage with business leaders in a virtual environment. Many community partners realized the need to maintain as much normalcy possible for students and volunteered to speak virtually to MET students to help them link what they are learning in the classroom to real-world applications.
MET’s active advisory board and growing network of local business and postsecondary partners provides MET students with mentorship, authentic projects to engage in, college and career pathway guidance, along with job shadowing and internship opportunities. Students partner with local businesses in their field of study and receive one-on-one guidance from their professional mentor to produce a personalized learning experience.
City of Peoria city traffic engineer Chris Lemka said MET places importance in recruiting the next generation of talent into the technical field. “MET is an amazing program that connects aspiring students with real world professionals,” said Lemka. “MET provides an opportunity to highlight the engineering profession with real world projects.”
MET students are challenged to develop their professional skills such as critical thinking, problem solving, creativity, collaboration and communication. These transformative skills are essential for success in students’ postsecondary education and professional careers.
Second-year MET Industrial Engineering Student Sylvia Lopez said working with her mentor has been invaluable and has allowed her to explore her passion through various professional fields. “Working with my mentor was rewarding and gave me a grasp on what work in the real world looks like and why it matters,” said Lopez. “It allowed me to find what I want to do after high school.”
The MET Academy serves students from all seven Peoria Unified high schools, allowing juniors and seniors that are interested in pursuing high demand STEM career pathways choose a focus in Medical, Engineering, Cyber-Security/IT Networking or Bioscience. For more information about the MET Academy, visit MET’s website at https://www.peoriaunified.org/MET.