Most graduates don’t leave high school knowing what they want to do with their lives. Luckily for Class of 2021 senior Aaron Protokowicz, this isn’t the case, and he has his school to thank.
Growing up homeschooled, Aaron enrolled with Florida Cyber Charter Academy (FLCCA) before the start of his ninth-grade year. Aaron immediately found his teachers to be supportive. “My teachers have always been super involved, outside of just the classroom,” Aaron said. Even tasks like tutoring or help sessions were engaging. He said, “Tutoring was actually fun to go to. If we needed help, they made it easy for us to ask questions. They’d be right there.”
Aaron knows the misconceptions surrounding online school, he said, “When people think of online school, they think you can do school whenever you want.” Students at FCCLA, however, experience the rigor of a more traditional school. They can expect to be challenged. “There are still classes you have to go – you’re given a schedule, and you have due dates,” Aaron said. The format of his classes helped him grow academically at a pace right for him.
Throughout high school, Aaron has also been challenged personally. Not only has he gained an education, but he’s also developed life skills along the way. The biggest? Organization, which hasn’t always come naturally to Aaron. He said, “School has pushed me to be more organized, which will help me in the workforce.”
Even more, his school gave him the chance to explore his dream field: automotive mechanics. From a young age, Aaron loved cars. “It started with me just watching my dad do normal maintenance on the family cars,” he said, “As I got older, I would start helping him more and more.” While a brick-and-mortar school would require Aaron to be in a building all day, his school gave Aaron the opportunity to not only thrive in his education, but the time to pursue his passion. He was able to work at a GMC dealership part time as a lube technician. Getting his foot in the door of this career field before even finishing high school has set him on a path of success.
Post-graduation, Aaron plans on continuing to grow his career in mechanics, with the eventual goal of joining the pit crew of a Formula 1 team and traveling the world while working on the most mechanically advanced automotive machines in the industry. He also wants to pursue an Automotive Service Certification through the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence and ultimately fulfil his dream of owning his own auto shop one day.
FLCCA gave Aaron the tools he needed academically and professionally. When reflecting on his time there, Aaron said, “I highly recommend online school for other people if you want to learn to be independent and work hard. I think it’s the perfect option to complete high school.” There is no doubt that Aaron’s determination will take him far.
To learn more about Florida Cyber Charter Academy, please visit flcca.k12.com