What is AOEA?
The Academy of Engineering & Automation (AOEA) is a four-year career academy affiliated with the National Academy Foundation (NAF). Career academies are for students who want to attend post-secondary school or begin a career right after high school. AOEA provides a smaller learning community in which a cohort of students have classes together. Academy teachers share the cohort students and work together to integrate technology into their curricula as well as develop interdisciplinary projects.
Who is it for?Any rising Freshmen living within the Cabarrus County Schools attendance zone.
Is AOEA only for students interested in engineering careers?
No. While many AOEA students are interested in STEM careers, the skills students will learn in AOEA are transferable to most any career choice.
How are students admitted?
A lottery is used to fill the spots with a maximum of 100 students. If more than 100 students apply, the lottery is used to determine the order of the wait-list. Students may be brought in from the waitlist over the summer before 9th grade or during the school year if a spot opens.
Why is a lottery used?
A career academy should be homogeneous to the school’s student population. A lottery is the most equitable method to achieve this. Interest and grades are NOT a factor in admittance.
Can my student take honors or AP classes?
Yes. Students will have the opportunity to take Honors and AP courses as their schedule permits.
Can my student take other elective courses?
Yes. Students still have the opportunity to take other elective courses.
Are academy courses more difficult?
No. All courses follow the NC standard course of study. What will be different is the integration into core classes, interdisciplinary approach/teaching, and project based learning. Work-based learning and 21st Century Skills are also included in AOEA courses. AOEA students will have many projects that involve working in teams and giving presentations.
Are there any conflicts with athletics or clubs?
No. AOEA students may participate in athletics and/or clubs that are after the school day. Students will be given the opportunity to participate in technical student organizations as well.
Are there any costs or fees to be in AOEA?
The Academy is free of charge. Students may have the option to purchase an Academy shirt. Most expenses for field trips will be paid for by the CTE (Career & Technical Education) Department. The inability to pay any expense will not have any impact on student participation in AOEA. Funding is available for these situations.
Can my student drop out of AOEA?
We expect to have a wait-list for enrolling in the AOEA Program. As a result, we expect students and their parents/guardians to seriously consider their decision to enroll because we expect a four-year commitment to the program’s responsibilities and requirements.
Most of the time conflicts with a student’s obligations can be worked out to allow students to meet their goals and stay in the Academy. The decision to drop will be made on a case-by-case basis.