A new program is helping local adults obtain their diploma from the Shawnee Mission School District.
Having launched this fall, 50 candidates have so far enrolled in this online opportunity. Watch this video to hear from students and instructors. The program provides students access to coursework, computer labs, and instructors who help them through the process.
Shamar Kindred a former SM North student has enrolled in Project Finish with the goal to go to community college following the completion of his diploma. Eventually, he wants to attend a four-year college to get a degree in Sports Psychology.
“I saw Project Finish on a news story and saw it as a second chance,” Kindred said. “A diploma has more value when I am ready to enroll in colleges and universities he said.”
Project Finish students may use the Horizons computer lab, a Johnson County Library computer, or they may work from home to complete coursework. Students have access to the online program and coursework 24 hours a day, seven days a week as long as they have access to the internet.
Sarah Finocchario, Project Finish instructor, helps answer questions and direct students to resources to assist them with their coursework. Previously, Finocchario taught English and being located at Horizons gives students access to science and math teachers as needed.
The high school diploma removes barriers and provides higher earning power, Finocchario reinforced.
Karina Montiel enrolled on the opening day after reading about Project Finish in a Johnson County magazine.
“I am doing this for myself and my babies,” Montiel said. “But it is most important to me to give this gift to my dad.”
Enrollment for Project Finish is hosted every Thursday at Horizons, 5900 Lamar Road. Applicants need to be 19 years of age or older, provide proof of identity and residency within the school district’s boundaries, their high school transcripts, and a fee for a background check.
Finocchario welcomes new enrollees and helps students in the computer lab at Horizons during the following hours:
Monday - Thursday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Once Project Finish students have completed all graduation requirements, they will be awarded a Shawnee Mission School District diploma from the SMSD high school of their choice.