Albany-- High school can be tough, but starting out in the real world can be even harder on recent graduates. Through Jobs for Georgia Graduates, high school seniors learn how to prepare for future careers, and job development.
The three "R's", reading, writing and arithmetic-- but in addition to that, students learn about the fourth "R", responsibility.
"It's a transition from high school to the real world, and my motto for my seniors is, 'The real world owes you nothing, but you owe it world everything,'" said Graduate Counselor Brenda Blackshear.
A world that can be frightening, especially if students haven't had any real experience with it on their own.
Senior Chloe Smith is lighting up her pathway before she finishes school. "You won't be in the dark, you have guidance," said Smith.
Guidance to learn how to function after high school. Whether they choose to find a job right away or go to college. Smith says, "You learn about time management, about setting goals and how you're going to get there."
Chloe Smith plans to attend Emory, and while she's there, Graduate specialist Brenda Blackshear hopes she'll take on another task-- at least part of the time.
"One thing I encourage my students is to work while in college, even if it's work study," said Blackshear. "Because once you graduate sometimes with a four year degree, employers are looking for experience. Education is awesome. It's wonderful, but if you have some work experience behind you, it will open some doors for you."
Doors that may have remained closed, if the skills to unlock them had not been taught. In the Jobs for Graduates program at Dougherty High last year, 43 of the 45 students graduated.