Goodwill Opens Papago Excel Center

Goodwill of Central and Northern Arizona unveiled the campus of its new Papago Excel Center, a tuition-free, public charter high school for adults.

The mission of The Excel Center is to transform adult lives through the power of achieving a high school diploma and accessing post-secondary education and careers in growing, sustainable local industries. Classes are offered at an accelerated pace in 10-week terms and customized to fit the needs of each student.

More than 700,000 adults in Arizona do not have a high school diploma, creating a barrier to job placement or career advancement. The new high school, located at 4837 E. McDowell Road in Phoenix, gives adults 18 and older a second chance at earning their diploma and provides opportunities for college credits and industry-recognized certifications. The new location also provides access to an on-site career center that offers no-cost career development and skills training to help students transition into new, fulfilling careers.

To help further break down barriers, students have wraparound services available, including free childcare, transportation assistance, flexible schedules and access to quality teachers and life coaches.

“We are incredibly excited to be in our brand-new building,” said Georgia Harris, vice president of The Excel Center and superintendent of schools. “We enrolled more than 200 students in our first year, and the new, centrally located space will allow us to continue to grow. Our team is looking forward to helping even more students and empowering them to achieve their goals at every turn.”

This proven model of adult-focused high schools has already given thousands of people across the country a second chance to earn their diplomas and the workforce training they need to get a better job and escape poverty. Data from other Goodwill Excel Centers shows four out of 10 Excel graduates go on to pursue post-secondary education, allowing them to build lifelong careers for themselves and their families.

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About Julie Coleman

Julie Coleman is a contributing writer for Frontdoors Media. She is Principal of Julie Coleman Consulting, providing strategic philanthropy consulting services for individuals, families, businesses, foundations and nonprofit organizations.
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