A group of Michigan City High School students attending the A. K. Smith Career Center received a special award from the LaPorte County Family YMCA in early March, honoring them as 2018 YMCA Youth Volunteers of the Year. The students, who are enrolled in the Career Skills program at A. K. Smith, received the award for their work at the Y’s Elston branch in Michigan City. Four days each week, the students spend two hours daily (one hour in the morning, and another hour in the afternoon) cleaning the YMCA. The work includes sweeping and mopping the hallways, gyms, and exercise rooms, and disinfecting machines and equipment in the cardio and weight rooms. The A. K. Smith students’ work at the Y is supervised by teachers Danielle Seibt and Katie Crozier and paraprofessionals Karen Durham and Marlene Chandler. Seibt says the partnership with the YMCA allows students to apply skills they learn in their Career Skills class in a real-world environment. In addition to custodial skills, Career Skills students learn painting and wallpapering, basic electrical and plumbing repair, landscaping, and other skills relating to the maintenance of large facilities. They also learn safety procedures related to tools and equipment. For more information, visit http://educateMC.net/careertech