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Education


Education. Well Crafted.


With revitalized economic energy and growth occurring throughout the region, it is also important to invest in education and workforce development. Catawba County is committed to crafting tomorrow’s leaders through the game-changing K-64 education initiative. K-64 is a systemic approach to shaping future careers and meeting workforce demands by connecting students and employers throughout the educational curriculum. From learning in technology-rich environments to experiencing local and global employment possibilities, K-64 actively engages students of all ages in preparing for viable and sustainable careers throughout their lifetime.

Hickory Public Schools

Hickory Public Schools

"Extending Excellence"

From regional, state, national, and international awards in academic competitions and excelling with superior ratings in the arts…to leading scores in athletics and the enhancement of character education, the students (and the faculty/staff) of Hickory Public Schools have collectively achieved inspiring success stories. 

  

Hickory Public Schools (HPS) offers families more than a journey of excellence in education. The children who attend HPS, a district of educational service since 1903, experience life-changing opportunities, setting a course for success in higher education, the workforce, or the military. 

 

HPS serves approximately 4,100 students in Hickory. Graduating seniors have earned nearly $30 million in collective scholarships over the past five years. 
 

Several contributing factors have helped to enhance this award-winning school district, including: 
 

  • The K-64 Initiative, with one-to-one technology (Chromebooks) provided to every student in middle and high school in the County. 

  • Hickory Career and Arts Magnet High School (HCAM) continues to add pathways for career education, including a new Health Science Academy. The magnet high school plans to advance the school’s technology with the use of drones—while broadening the academies for graphic design, computer programming, and photography/video production. 

  • The HPS flagship high school, Hickory High, has expanded course offerings through the Advanced Placement (AP) pathway—with the addition of the AP Diploma and the AP International Diploma.  

  • Hickory High (as well as the two district middle schools, 6th-8th grades), offers the only orchestra program in the county. 

  • Dual Language Immersion (Spanish) is now offered in two elementary schools, with the expansion to a third elementary school starting in fall 2020. 

  • HPS has more than doubled the participation of students enrolled in College and Career Pathways through the partnership with Catawba Valley Community College (CVCC); and the added partnership with Lenoir-Rhyne University grows annually—with a university scholars program for high school juniors and seniors. 

  • Longview Elementary, for the second year in a row, ranks in the top five percent in NC for student growth with end-of-year testing. 

 

 

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K-64 | Launchpad For Learning

K-64 | Launchpad For Learning

With revitalized economic energy and growth occurring throughout the region, it is also important to invest in education and workforce development. Catawba County is committed to crafting tomorrow’s leaders through the game-changing K-64 education initiative. K-64 is a systemic approach to shaping future careers and meeting workforce demands by connecting students and employers throughout the educational curriculum. From learning in technology-rich environments to experiencing local and global employment possibilities, K-64 actively engages students of all ages in preparing for viable and sustainable careers throughout their lifetime. 

  

To accomplish this, K-64 focuses on six priority areas:  

 
  •  1-to-World Technology - connecting students with the technology they need to optimize learning inside and outside the classroom;  

  •  Character and Soft Skills Development - ensuring students are prepared to engage in work and in life by learning critical soft skills such as goal setting, interpersonal communication, and team building;  

  •  Tech-Savvy Educators - Continually equipping teachers with the knowledge and skills needed to incorporate leading-edge technologies into lesson plans and classroom environments; 

  • Work-based Learning - Facilitating job shadowing, internships, co-ops, work-study programs and apprenticeships to connect students with global career opportunities and local employers; 

  • Employer Engagement - Cultivating collaborative partnerships with businesses to invest in the development of a we/I-prepared and highly engaged workforce of tomorrow; and  

  •  Career Adaptability - Ensuring access to relevant educational services and training opportunities to help adults develop nimble skill sets and assure career longevity.  
      

True to the collaborative spirit of the region, local educational institutions, business organizations, and community partners work together to support K-64, including Catawba Valley Community College, Catawba County Schools, Hickory Public Schools, Newton-Conover City Schools, Catawba County Government, Catawba County Economic Development Corporation, the Catawba County Chamber of Commerce, and Lenoir-Rhyne University. 

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Catawba Valley Community College

Catawba Valley Community College

Offering more than 50 programs of study and enrolling 4,800 students, Catawba Valley Community College (CVCC) is a comprehensive learning community that provides a multitude of collegiate, industrial/vocational, and life-skills/personal enrichment experiences.   

  

CVCC is ranked as one of the top community colleges in the nation and is widely recognized for its innovative programs that are cultivating a new generation of doers and makers and providing individuals with the tools and training to be successful in today’s workforce.   

  

Hickory has a rich history of craftsmanship and furniture manufacturing. Today, the Catawba Valley Furniture Academy at CVCC is an industry-driven training program designed by local furniture manufacturers to prepare students for skilled positions that are in high demand by one of the region's largest employers.   

  

“Partnerships created through programs such as the Catawba Valley Manufacturing Academy, Furniture Academy, K-64, and the development of unique facilities like the Workforce Solutions Complex and the ValleySim Hospital are evidence of the momentum around exceptional talent development in Hickory and throughout the region,” said Dr. Garrett Hinshaw, President of CVCC. 

  

The CVCC Workforce Solutions Complex is a leading-edge 80,400-square-foot facility housing technology and engineering programs. The $25 million project is the culmination of many years of planning and collaboration with the three public school systems.   

  

The building includes state-of-the-art classrooms, offices, labs, and shop areas for students studying HVAC systems, welding, automotive mechanics, machining, engineering, mechatronics, and more. The new Workforce Solutions Complex will ensure a future pipeline of talent for high-tech jobs, making our area even more attractive to new and expanding industry. 

  

CVCC also recently celebrated the grand opening of Phase I of its Public Safety Training Center. Located off of Sweetwater Road in Hickory, the new 55,000-square-foot training center pad will be used by the college to teach students, as well as seasoned public service professionals in fire safety, emergency medical service, and law enforcement. 

  

“Catawba Valley Community College is committed to developing talent in partnership with the City of Hickory to assure that our community will continue to thrive as an economic catalyst for our entire region. We work in concert with city officials to identify opportunities and aggressively pursue those that create a significant return on investment for our citizens,” said Dr. Garrett Hinshaw, President of CVCC. 

 
 
Lenoir Rhyne University

Lenoir Rhyne University

Founded in 1891, Lenoir-Rhyne University is a co-educational, private liberal arts institution with more than 50 undergraduate degree programs and over 30 graduate degree programs. With a 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio, LR enrolls more than 2,750 undergraduate and graduate students and has had 11 consecutive years of enrollment growth. 

  

“Lenoir-Rhyne University is incredibly fortunate to call Hickory home,” said Dr. Fred Whitt, President of the University. “Hickory has everything Lenoir-Rhyne could ask for—a thriving downtown and business community, beautiful outdoor and recreation areas, and fabulous restaurants, activities and community events.”  

  

“I regularly hear from prospective and current students about how much they enjoy the city of Hickory, and their engagement with Hickory goes far beyond simply attending school here. They do community service at local nonprofits and volunteer in schools, they intern and work at companies and organizations throughout the area, and many of them choose to stay in the community after graduation.” 

  

The City Walk project will further connect LR students with the Hickory community by creating a direct link to the recently renovated downtown, future Riverwalk, and Lake Hickory, as well as other destinations and amenities throughout the city.  

  

In October 2019, LR expanded its Catawba County Promise to provide the same tuition benefits statewide. Now called the Lenoir-Rhyne Promise, the program offers a minimum of 50 percent off tuition to any North Carolina resident who is a first-year undergraduate student with a 3.5 or higher high school GPA or to a transfer undergraduate student with more than 30 attempted hours from an accredited North Carolina community college and a 3.5 GPA. The program, which covers tuition only, applies to new and full-time undergraduate students starting fall 2020. 

  

Dr. Whitt added, “Today, our enrollment continues to grow, our graduate programs are flourishing, and new buildings are going up to enhance the student experience and better welcome visitors to our campus. And as we look to the future, we are committed to continuing our productive and collaborative partnership with the City.” 

  

  

 
LRU
 

 

City of Hickory


76 North Center Street
Hickory, North Carolina 28601
Phone: (828) 323-7400
Fax: (828) 323-7550

 

 

Life. Well Crafted.


Hickory is for doers and makers seeking a well-rounded community, located between Charlotte and Asheville at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains, along I-40, where a collective spirit of craftsmanship strengthens any endeavor with detail, artistry, and quality.
 

 

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