Program Gives Early Start, College Credit toward a Career


High School Juniors Learn about Tuition-Free Tech Prep at CSM

High school students from Charles and St. Mary’s counties spent a recent day learning about healthcare career Tech Prep programs available and transferable—tuition-free—to the College of Southern Maryland during an interactive, hands-on tour of CSM’s Health Technology Building on the La Plata Campus.

In addition to healthcare, Tech Prep programs include accounting, finance, criminal justice, electronics, computer applications, graphic communications and more. They also give students an early start—and college credit—for the completion of select high school courses.

“Tech Prep will help students confirm their decision to pursue a field of study or pique their interest in another field,” said CSM Nursing and Allied Health Advisor Jackie Koerbel who introduced the program to visiting high school juniors.

The students who participated in Tech Prep Day visited with CSM instructors and professionals in the fields they are considering. CSM Lab/Media Coordinator Linda Goodman showed students ‘Noelle’  the birthing simulator,  a SimMan Manikin who had been pre-programmed with flu symptoms, the Virtual IV used to train for starting an intravenous (IV) line and the Sound Simulator used to help nursing students identify heart and lung sounds they might hear through a stethoscope.

CSM Criminal Justice Professor Ed Schauf demonstrated infant CPR techniques using a Teddy bear simulator as well as showed students the Automated External Defibrillator (AED) training simulator and the simulated programmable Vital Sim Child and Infant used in emergency medical service (EMS) and fire safety training where students can hear heart and lung sounds, verbal responses and cardiac rhythms as well as take blood pressure measurements.

“This is really great that students have this opportunity to get a closer look at healthcare careers and to learn about the Tech Prep program,” said Wendy Farrell, an instructor in dental assisting at the Dr. James A. Forrest Career and Technology Center.

The Tech Prep program is open to all high school students who want to explore technical programs. Students can begin taking high school Tech Prep courses their sophomore year and can earn college credit through CSM if they complete the entire sequence of high school career and technology courses with a cumulative grade of ‘B’ or higher. Credit for these courses can be transferred to CSM. The transfer policy regarding Tech Prep credit varies among four-year institutions.

For information on Tech Prep, visit or call CSM’s Tech Prep coordinator at 301-934-2251, ext. 7433.