Twenty-six students from each district in Grant County toured two college campuses and attended a career fair March 2 in a first-time collaboration between the Oregon State University Extension Office and the Youth Transition Program.

The transition program, a mainstay in the Grant School District for several years, gives students opportunities to explore job interests, gain workplace skills and build interpersonal relationships and customer service skills.

Tami Sasser, the YTP specialist, heads up Grant Union, and Christi Dehaven is the specialist for the service district in Prairie City, Monument, Dayville and Long Creek.

Dehaven said the trip could not have worked out better, and the students showed a genuine interest.

Didgette McCracken, the Open Campus Coordinator at OSU, who helps people earn online degrees through the Open Campus and adults earn high school diplomas, said the students were visualizing themselves in an academic setting and out of Grant County.

McCracken said it is hard for students to leave Grant County.

“It is overwhelming for many of them,” said McCracken.

DeHaven said Sasser was instrumental in making the trip happen, as was Michele Engle, Monument teacher, Mark McKay, chaperone, Jeff Schafer, bus driver and chaperone, and Robert Waltenburg, superintendent of the Grant County Education Service District.

“I hope we can make this an annual event,” said McCracken.


Steven Mitchell is a reporter for the Blue Mountain Eagle. Contact him at or 541-575-0710.

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