COSMOS to be first Education SEAL in Indiana

UNDATED – The Indiana Office of Work-Based Learning and Apprenticeship is proud to announce a partnership with COSMOS, the Collaboration of Shoals, Mitchell, and Orleans Schools, in developing two Indiana State Earn and Learns in Education Careers and Pre-Nursing.

COSMOS stands for Collaboration of Shoals, Mitchell, and Orleans Schools. The ultimate goal is to prepare students for a career.

“COSMOS will be a great way for students to have hands-on experience in the career field of their interest prior to starting their college career. This will ensure that they have indeed chosen the correct career path that will best fit their future. I truly cannot wait to see this program in action and feel very excited about this partnership,” said Whitley Clements, Assistant Director, Strategic Development & Special Projects; 21st CCLC Program Director.

Starting with the class of 2025, students who participate in these programs will receive Ivy Tech dual credits, nationally recognized industry certifications, and opportunities for paid work-based learning with local business partners.

“A core component of COSMOS’s mission is the promotion of innovation through partnerships. This program and the quality partnerships represented definitely fits the mission’s definition. The SEAL initiative will prove the greatest gains can only occur when school and business collaborate, innovate, and work together. Greater gains will be possible through the continued encouragement and support of agencies like The Indiana Office of Work-Based Learning and Apprenticeship and The Governor’s WorkforceCabinet.” said Brent Comer Supertindent Mitchell Community Schools.

Indiana State Earn and Learns or SEALs, are one of the highest forms of Career and Technical Education available in Indiana and are effective state-approved apprenticeships.

“Working with the superintendents of these school corporations and Apryl Kidd was just a pleasure and happy to see the forward-thinking and innovation. This program is great for rural America and rural Indiana as well as for education in Indiana,” Jason Graves Southern Indiana Regional Director Indiana Office of Work-Based Learning and Apprenticeship.

In 2020, the Indiana Office of Work-Based Learning and COSMOS began the planning stages of offering two new career and technical education opportunities to students. Typical of the innovative educational practices of COSMOS, the programs are innovative and meet the local economic demands of the region.

Those partners include Shoals, Mitchell, and Orleans School Corporations,Hoosier Uplands, 21st Century Community Learning Center After-School Programs along with health care partners Trilogy Healthcare and Ascension St. Vincent Dunn

“Small schools are often striving for ways to maintain their own identity but also provide the benefits and course offerings of larger schools. The SEAL initiative between the three schools continues to demonstrate that small schools can come together and share programs and resources in a very successful way,” Superintendent Shoals Community Schools Superintendent Dr. Candace Roush.

With a teacher and nursing shortage hitting Indiana, this is a great opportunity for students to gain career insight and experiences while earning a wage and serving their community.

Education Careers

First Education SEAL in the state. Students will begin early field experiences and eventually move to paid positions in the community and local schools. The program is designed in partnership with Indiana University, the Office of Work-Based Learning and Apprenticeship, and Hoosier Uplands 21st Century CommunityLearning Centers.

This program is striving to become the first registered Education Apprenticeship in the United States.


Students will complete necessary course work to begin work in local area healthcare providers like nursing homes and hospitals and complete essential pieces for acceptance into RA, LPN, or BSN programs. Both CNA and Dementia certifications will be offered for students in completing vital on-the-job training and reinforcing industry skills.

Each program will provide at least 12 Ivy Tech dual credits and end with over 500 hours of experience. The Pre-Nursing program was awarded a grant to implement the new Next Level Programs of Study.

“We believe the SEAL framework will enhance the secondary experience by providing students the opportunity to develop technical, academic, and employability skills through experiential learning,” said Apryl Kidd Director of COSMOS.

This will be the first Pathway SEAL in the state of Indiana, with over 100 such seal programs throughout the state which include Auto Tech, Construction, Robotic, and Welding just to name a few.

“Orleans Community Schools is excited about the opportunities that the SEAL initiative provides for the students in COSMOS. The partnership between Shoals, Mitchell, and Orleans Schools has allowed all three school corporations to grow in ways that each couldn’t by themselves. COSMOS will continue to seek out partnerships and opportunities that will benefit our students going forward. We are also thankful for the support that The Indiana Office of Work-Based Learning and Apprenticeship and The Governor’s Workforce Cabinet has given to COSMOS, and to its students,” Superintendent of Orleans Community Schools Mr. James Ellis.

On the job Training

Education Careers – Students will complete both unpaid and paid experiences in education that will provide experience in special education, school culture, and classroom instruction.

This will be a perfect program for any student interested in becoming a teacher and changing the lives of young people. This program was designed in coordination with the Indiana University School of Education and is designed to continue after high school graduation and into college.

“Trilogy is excited to partner with COSMOS on this initiative. We understand the value High School students have on our campuses, resident care, and community.  Trilogy strives to create the best workforce in every community we are in. We can’t wait to see how this partnership will grow and we look forward to seeing the student’s in our facilities,” said Mike Eichberger, Trilogy Health Services Manager of Workforce Development and Apprenticeships.