This year's senior class at Webster County High School is the first to make it through six years of education with the GEAR UP program, a statewide effort to encourage kids to continue education past high school
"It's kind of cool. We've been in it for this long, and they've done so much for us, taken us on field trips, and informed us about financial aid and anything of that matter," said WCHS senior Isaac Moses.
On Thursday, those students and staff at WCHS were putting together a time capsule to help remember all they've learned. Students added trinkets that demonstrated the career they want to enter, careers they've decided on in part thanks to the help from GEAR UP.
"Some of the kids never go to the Eastern Panhandle or the Northern Panhandle, and I think through the GEAR UP program, they've been able to visit every college and that's given them a whole view of the state of West Virginia as well," said WCHS Assistant Principal Connie Robinson.
But exposure to careers and colleges is only one part of the program. Robinson said the information provided to the students and their families is invaluable in making their college dreams a reality.
"I'm a mother of two students who are in their young twenties now, and my kids didn't know about that when they were in school. It seems like these students are much better informed than students maybe ten years ago," Robinson said.
The capsule will be dug up in 2024, and the Class of 2014 will get a reminder of their senior year at their 10-year class reunion.
Webster County High School's GEAR UP grant runs this year, and staff said they're also hoping that their success will help push along the grant's renewal.