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 A group of local teens tour RPM & Associates, a Rapid City manufacturing firm, during the recent Black Hills State University Summer Technology Academy.

A group of local teens spent several days preparing for their future during the recent Black Hills State University Summer Technology Academy.

The academy held in Rapid City gave students an opportunity to experience technology-related careers that are offered throughout the Black Hills.

The students participated in engineering problem solving activities, leadership and team building activities and tours of local companies including Hills Materials, RPM & Associates, Prairie Berry, and Caterpillar.

“The Academy helped in developing a pipeline from junior and senior high school to training to employment by directly exposing students to actual work environments,” according to Steve Wynia, assistant professor of industrial technology.

Wynia said there was great feedback on the three-day academy and plans to offer the program next summer as well.

“The students developed an understanding of what jobs and careers are available in the area as well as earning and career growth potentials,” he said.

The students also earned a college credit through the program.