Who’s Educating Alaska On It’s Riches?

In Home, News by wp_sysadmin

With all eyes focused on education in Juneau, and especially the funding of education for Alaska students, It’s important to remember that there are organizations outside of the school districts who play a critical role in educating  our students, at their own expense. These organizations  often fill a gap in curriculum that school districts don’t have the resources to provide.

Alaska Resource Education (ARE) is the leader in this area. Some highlights from their efforts include:

  • Training 40,000+  students in Alaska over the last 5 years  – many of them in rural communities.
  • Providing curriculum that  is focused on ALL of  Alaska’s natural resources:  Forestry, Rocks and Minerals, Mining, Energy and Electricity, Oil and Gas, and Renewable Energy.
  • Providing curriculum about Economics and Energy Costs  
  • Providing  programs for workforce development,  helping students identify career training opportunities here in Alaska.
  • Youth programs that include work with the Girl Scouts, STEM Camps and Scholarships.

Alaska Resource Education clearly plays a crucial role in fundamental education and workforce development for Alaska’s natural resource industries. No other organization is reaching this many Alaska students with such a diverse, comprehensive curriculum that encourages students to pursue careers in Alaska.

In addition to their regular program, which taught 12,000 students in 2023 about basic science and economics associated with Alaska’s natural resources, ARE offered the following extended programs: 

Powerful Opportunities for Women in Resources (POWR):  A district-wide program for female students in Anchorage to learn about Alaska’s mineral and energy resources as well as the wide range of career opportunities while also busting the myth that these jobs are only “for the boys.”

Bristol Bay CTE energy camp:  A week-long intensive for students from all 4 school districts in the Bristol Bay region being offered for dual credit through the UA system. During this camp, students explore training locations and career opportunities in energy and support service industries throughout the Kenai Peninsula.

ARE Rockstars: This week-long camp hosted at NACTEC in Nome will bring students from across the Bering Sea region to learn all about cross-industry careers students can have right out of high school, including geotechnical, soil sampling, heavy equipment operators, and many more that are relevant to the infrastructure and mining projects that are proposed for the region.

Kuslivak Career Academy:  3 quarters of curriculum and direct instruction for students from across Southwest Alaska in LKSD attending the academy. In these programs, students explore and engage with the intricate choices Alaskans must make in the realms of transportation and infrastructure, energy, and resource development through hands-on and problem-based learning.

Just this month, ARE released its latest curriculum, Alaska’s Renewable Revenue, which is designed to teach middle and high school students about financial literacy, the Fund, its structure, investment management, and how the Fund is used to convert non-renewable mineral resources into a renewable economic resource for Alaska. 

Alaska Resource Education is bridging the gap between Alaska’s natural resources and Alaska’s students – providing workforce development programs and critical education that  are essential for individual success, economic vitality, and community well-being.

We hope the legislature agrees.