Senior Haider Almaleki thinks JAG is class that makes sense for life.

“We learn about opportunities that are available and how to take advantage of them,” Almaleki said. “Like that apprenticeship at DTE Energy. We didn’t know anything about that until JAG came around and took us on a field trip.”

JAG is a federally-funded program serving schools in all 50 states. This year each of the small schools at Cody and Osborn have JAG classes.

Instructor Genie Davis is a retired teacher and principal who is teaching JAG for the first time this year. She called JAG an amazing opportunity for students to get exposed to different career paths. She explained the DTE field trip that impressed Almaleki.

“DTE is trying to recruit 50,000 people in Michigan because they are losing about 50,000 people to retirement. They had a career day to recruit talent and invited Cody as one of the frontrunner schools they’re looking at to hire for these jobs that are going to be starting at about $30,000 a year,” Davis said.

JAG also guarantees summer employment for every student. Davis said that’s really important when there’s so much competition for jobs.

A highlight of the year was a leadership program in Washington D.C. with about 1000 students from 30 states. DIT got to take one student, and based on the leadership potential he showed in class, Davis chose Almaleki.Almaleki said he learned a lot from the conference about leadership, professionalism, networking and practicing workplace skills and behavior. But seeing the capital, flying for the first time, meeting people from all over, staying in a fancy hotel, and dressing professionally every day really made an impact.

“Being able to see how wealthy professionals live inspired me to work harder to get rich,” Almaleki said.