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High School Guide: Best choices for helping a career

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High School Guide: Best choices for helping a career

New York City’s public high schools boast a huge array of specialty tracks for students looking to explore a career path or cultivate a talent. Some of these reside in institutions devoted entirely to music, art and other pursuits. Others can be found as career and technical education, or CTE, programs within large high schools.

Either way, dedicated students can earn industry-endorsed diplomas that impress college admissions officers, or lead right into the paid workforce.

Here are 10 of the city’s best.

Agriculture and veterinary science
JOHN BOWNE HIGH SCHOOL
63-25 Main St., Queens
Enrollment: 3,294
Four-year graduation rate: 77%

One of the last working farms in Queens thrives on the campus of Flushing’s John Bowne High School. The 4-acre “Land Lab” is the domain of the school’s 600 Aggies, students of its century-old agriculture CTE program. Kids work there year-round collecting eggs in the poultry house, tending the cow and alpacas in the large animal barn, caring for rabbits and exotic birds in the small animal labs, picking apples in the orchard and cultivating flowers and vegetables to sell at the on-site farmers market. In the summer, sophomores and juniors live and work on family-owned dairy, horse and vegetable farms or take urban internships at veterinary hospitals, nurseries and zoos. The school’s chapter of Future Farmers of America — the only one in the city — prepares kids for jobs in the burgeoning green economy and for admission to top-ranked agriculture schools like Cornell University.

John Bowne High School has one of the last working farms in Queens.
Riyad Hasan

Architecture
HIGH SCHOOL OF ART AND DESIGN
245 E. 56th St., Manhattan
Enrollment: 1,507
Four-year graduation rate: 94%

A rigorous career and technical education program teaches budding architects the tools of the trade, including AutoCAD. Freshman year begins with a course that provides solid grounding in hand-drafting and basic design skills. Unusual projects unleash students’ creativity: Last year, sophomores studying interior design constructed intricate dollhouses to experiment with room layouts, then donated them to local children’s hospitals. By senior year, students work in partnership with the New York City Economic Development Corporation to develop such neighborhood-planning projects as Willets Point in Queens and Hudson Yards in Manhattan. The school’s long-running internship program placed over 200 students at more than 100 work sites this year.

Auto repair
ALFRED E. SMITH CAREER AND TECHNICAL EDUCATION HIGH SCHOOL
333 E. 151st St., The Bronx
Enrollment: 444
Four-year graduation rate: 99%

Nationally certified CTE programs at this South Bronx school give students a running start on careers in the automotive industry. The long-established automotive technology track offers a thorough four-year curriculum covering brakes, steering, suspension, electrical systems and computer control. A new collision repair program tackles auto body assembly, dent and glass repair, welding and detailing. After three years of practice in classrooms stocked with the same equipment used in commercial service shops, seniors are ready to work in the school’s on-site garage, open to the public for inspections, bodywork, oil changes, alarm installations and more. Many students snag prestige internships at dealerships like BMW of Manhattan and Lexus of Queens, building resumes that help them land solid jobs as soon as they graduate.

Exterior of Alfred E. Smith Career and Technical Edcuation High School.
Alfred E. Smith Career and Technical Education High School is a South Bronx school with nationally certified CTE programs.
J.C.Rice

Aviation
AVIATION CAREER & TECHNICAL EDUCATION HIGH SCHOOL
45-30 36th St., Queens
Enrollment: 2,011
Four-year graduation rate: 99%

Students aim for the sky at Aviation High School in Long Island City, which has been training top-flight airplane mechanics and aerospace engineers since 1936. Everyone takes intensive, hands-on courses in aircraft maintenance starting freshman year, covering all the subject areas required to earn Federal Aviation Administration certification in either the airframe or the power plant subject area. At the same time, they juggle the requirements of a core college prep curriculum, with 11 AP classes. Top students can gain their second FAA license through an additional fifth-year honors program that’s taught at Aviation’s own annex at John F. Kennedy International Airport. Many of them take paid internships at Delta, JetBlue and other industry partners, burnishing their resumes for college, military academies and in-demand careers with airlines and air freight carriers.

Historic preservation
STEPHEN T. MATHER BUILDING ARTS & CRAFTSMANSHIP HIGH SCHOOL
439 W. 49th St., Manhattan
Enrollment: 406
Four-year graduation rate: 84%

In partnership with the National Park Service, this school is nurturing the professionals who will sustain and protect America’s historical heritage far into the future. At Mather High School, kids get their hands dirty working with paint, plaster, plants, wood, bricks and stone as they pursue CTE-endorsed diplomas in carpentry, masonry, decorative finishes and landscape management. They also get a grounding in preservation methodology skills like research, documentation and interpretation, giving them new appreciation of the history that’s all around us. Students visit every one of Manhattan’s 11 national historic sites, participate in multiple work-based learning trips and complete internships before they graduate. Many earn Occupational Safety and Health Administration and scaffolding certifications necessary for careers in the specialty building trades.

Marine science
URBAN ASSEMBLY NEW YORK HARBOR SCHOOL
550 Short Ave., Governors Island
Enrollment: 513
Four-year graduation rate: 86%

Kids with a passion for the sea plunge into their studies on picturesque Governor’s Island as they prepare for careers on — and under — the water. Sophomores choose from seven three-year CTE programs like vessel operations, aquaculture and marine biology research, gaining hands-on experience in the classroom and in the field. The professional diving track, the only one of its kind in the nation, allows students to earn college-level scientific diving certification junior year; some seniors obtain divemaster certification, opening the door to careers in the recreational dive industry. Everyone, according to their specialty, pitches in on school-wide efforts like the Billion Oyster Project, which aims to restore the ecosystem of New York Harbor by cultivating and caring for the bivalves in local waters.

Nursing
CURTIS HIGH SCHOOL
105 Hamilton Ave., Staten Island
Enrollment: 2,455
Four-year graduation rate: 74%

The crenelated, castle-like walls of Curtis High School, perched on a hilltop in St. George, houses one of the city’s most demanding CTE programs — and one of its most successful, boasting an average 100 percent pass rate on state certification exams. With a maximum 340 students and up-to-date facilities, the nursing program has produced hundreds of medical professionals since its inception. After two years of preparatory classes, students begin two years of study either in the practical nursing program, which requires 798 clinical hours in addition to the classroom curriculum, or the nursing assistant program, which calls for a lighter load of 108 clinical hours. Both tracks culminate in New York State certification tests that allow students to enter the job market immediately after graduation.

Exterior of Curtis High School
Curtis High School boasts an average of 100 percent pass rate on state certification exams.
J.C.Rice

Performing arts
FIORELLO H. LAGUARDIA HIGH SCHOOL OF MUSIC & ART AND PERFORMING ARTS
100 Amsterdam Ave., Manhattan
Enrollment: 2,717
Four-year graduation rate: 99%

Internationally renowned as “the ‘Fame’ school,” LaGuardia is the nation’s first public high school dedicated to the performing and visual arts, established in 1936 — and the only one of the city’s specialized high schools that relies on auditions, not the SHSAT test, for entry. The demanding curriculum pairs intense conservatory instruction in six artistic pursuits — dance, drama, instrumental music, vocal music, fine arts and technical theater — with college-prep academics, including 21 AP classes. Two to four periods each day are devoted to studio classes in each student’s specialty. Dance majors, for example, are on their feet for an 80-minute ballet class and another 80-minute modern dance class daily. The school’s huge, modernist building on the Upper West Side contains two theaters, a concert hall, multiple specialized studio classrooms and an art gallery, all of which host innumerable shows and performances, including a major musical production. This year, it’s “All Shook Up,” based on the music of Elvis Presley.

Front page of NY Post December 8 edition reads 'NYC High School Guide.'
The Post’s December 8 edition shares insights into the many NYC high schools.
jrodriguez

Sports medicine
BAYSIDE HIGH SCHOOL
32-24 Corporal Kennedy St., Queens
Enrollment: 2,949
Four-year graduation rate: 99%

The sports medicine and management CTE program at Bayside High School in northern Queens gives students a head start on a hot career field. This well-designed four-year sequence of coursework provides a grounding in anatomy, nutrition and injury prevention — the necessary basics for physical therapy, rehabilitation and coaching jobs. A partnership with SUNY’s Farmingdale State College allows students to gain up to 19 credits in college-accredited courses; they can also earn NCSF Personal Trainer certification and CPR/AED certification through the American Heart Association. An array of internships, workplace visits and job-shadowing opportunities gives kids a taste of real-world experience. Bayside’s impressive athletic facilities — three gyms, multiple weight and workout rooms, tennis and handball courts, and a pool — support 34 PSAL teams.

Video/film production
ACADEMY FOR CAREERS IN TELEVISION & FILM
1-50 51st Ave., Queens
Enrollment: 571
Four-year graduation rate: 98%

A funky modern building on the Hunters Point waterfront houses this popular school that prepares students for both college and career. Everyone takes four years of video production courses, taught by industry pros with extensive movie, TV and advertising experience. The work grounds kids in the crucial “below the line” or technical roles that are the lifeblood of the film industry. Students have access to professional equipment they can use for both class assignments and independent projects; the campus is equipped with three soundstages, an editing lab, prop and wardrobe rooms, a set construction shop and a sound mixing studio. Many snag internships at local powerhouses like WNET and Silvercup Studios. Meanwhile, kids keep up with a full college-prep academic program, with six AP classes available.

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Sports world reacts to John Madden’s death

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Sports world reacts to John Madden’s death

Legendary NFL coach and broadcaster John Madden died Tuesday morning at 85, the NFL announced. News of the football icon’s passing hit Twitter on Tuesday evening, and athletes, coaches and broadcasters from across the sports world reacted.

Fellow broadcasting legend Dick Vitale, who is currently battling cancer, called Madden “the greatest analyst of all time of any sport” in his Twitter tribute.

Former Yankees pitcher and notable Raiders fan CC Sabathia said “your legacy will live forever.” Madden coached the then-Oakland Raiders from 1969-78, a couple of years before Sabathia, a Vallejo, California native, was born. Lakers star LeBron James had similar words about Madden’s lasting legacy, adding an infinity emoji.

Former tennis star and social justice activist Billie Jean King recalled meeting Madden as a “privilege.”

Radio voice of the Rangers Kenny Albert, a five-sport broadcaster who’s been with FOX Sports since its inception in 1994, shared a photo circa 26 years ago to remember Madden.

ESPN’s Bomani Jones took a bit of a shot at current color commentators, noting that Madden “set an unreachable standard.”

Frank Caliendo, who’s made a career out of impersonations, including one for Madden, said he was surprised how emotional he felt.

Several football players, and others, including Saints running back Mark Ingram II and former Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant, credited Madden with being part of the reason why they love football.

Rams wide receiver and NFL MVP contender Cooper Kupp quote the late coach in his tribute: “The road to Easy Street goes through the sewer.”

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Miles McBride’s Knicks role will lessen with Kemba Walker’s resurgence

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Miles McBride’s Knicks role will lessen with Kemba Walker’s resurgence

MINNEAPOLIS — The Knicks got back another body in rookie point guard Miles McBride, who was cleared from protocols Tuesday and rejoined the team in Minnesota.

But there is no longer any hype for the rookie’s return. Kemba Walker is back as the starting point guard and coming off winning Eastern Conference Player of the Week honors with four standout games, including his Christmas Day spectacular. The Knicks have gone 2-2 since Walker regained the starting job.

“It’s great,’’ coach Tom Thibodeau said. “He had a great week. He’s playing great basketball. The team winning helps him get recognized and he was a big part of driving that winning. It’s great for the team.’’

McBride was also spectacular in his last outing before getting COVID-19, when he played the entire second half Dec. 16 in Houston and seemingly earned a spot in the rotation. In fact, McBride had strung together two decent outings before he was ruled out. But things have changed since his emergence and McBride is likely back to being a bit player.

Without a practice, McBride wasn’t even expected to see time when the Knicks faced the Timberwolves to kick off a four-game road trip.

Miles McBride
NBAE via Getty Images

Of course, with Walker’s arthritic knee, anything is possible. The Knicks play Detroit on Wednesday in a back-to-back, so it’s uncertain whether Walker will complete both contests. In addition, Immanuel Quickley is out of COVID-19 protocols but Thibodeau wasn’t sure he was ready for meaningful minutes.

That left Walker against the depleted Timberwolves, who were missing their three top players (Anthony Edwards, Karl-Anthony Towns, D’Angelo Russell), all because of COVID-19 .

Kemba Walker
Kemba Walker
USA TODAY Sports

When McBride got sidelined by the virus and Derrick Rose needed ankle surgery, Walker was resurrected by Thibodeau and it’s been a stunning comeback story.

Though Thibodeau has clear reservations about Walker based on his nine-game banishment due to his defensive malaise as an undersized point guard, he admitted after the Christmas Day triple-double against Atlanta that Walker is playing “much more aggressive.”

Walker’s triple-double that featured 10 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds was a lot different than his prior outing, when he scored 44 points against Washington.

“I thought his passing was terrific,’’ Thibodeau said before the Knicks resumed their schedule.

“Kemba had control of the game. The game tells you what to do. That’s what I loved about the way he played. I don’t think he forced anything. They puts size on him and were aggressive in their pick-and-roll coverage. He didn’t fight it. He attacked pressure the way you like to attack pressure. You don’t fight pressure with pressure. Don’t try to split it. Get rid of it, go to the backside. Let the game tell you what to do.’’

The Knicks coach is finally seeing all the elements of what Walker can do. Before his demotion, Walker was nothing more than a no-defense, 3-point shooter whose plus-minus was an abysmal minus-122.

Thibodeau was also concerned about his durability in sitting out two of the three back-to-back sets. The last load management game in Atlanta in late November triggered Thibodeau’s decision.

But now it’s only superlatives from Thibodeau in judging the last four games.

“Sometimes it’s going to be his shooting, sometimes it’s his penetration and getting in the paint to force a collapse and sometimes they’re being aggressive with their traps get rid of the ball quickly,’’ Thibodeau said. “The overall play, his rebounding. When your guards rebound, those are key to fast breaks. The more guard rebounding we get the better we can be. ‘’

The Knicks still have three players in protocols — centers Nerlens Noel and Jericho Sims and the newly infected Wayne Selden. Quickley and Kevin Knox were cleared on Christmas but were held out for conditioning.

No matter. The Knicks go as Kemba goes.

“He’s much more aggressive,’’ Thibodeau said. “That was the challenge. At the beginning of the year he and Evan were two new starters. Sometimes guys are trying to fit in. he’s being very aggressive which is the way we want him to play. Not deferring at all. When he and Julius [Randle] are aggressive like that our team is different.’’

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Bar raises dramatically for Zach Wilson in matchup with Tom Brady, Buccaneers

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Zach Wilson and Tom Brady

When Zach Wilson stares across the MetLife Stadium field at the opposite sideline this Sunday, it won’t be Trevor Lawrence he’ll be looking at as his game-day counterpart.

Lawrence, drafted by Jacksonville one spot before the Jets selected Wilson at No. 2 overall last April, is a contemporary.

This Sunday at MetLife, the Jets rookie quarterback won’t be staring at a contemporary on the other sideline. He’ll be staring at the GOAT.

Tom Brady.

The bar raises dramatically for Wilson and the Jets, who are coming off of their feel-good, get-well win over the woeful Jaguars and Lawrence this past Sunday.

Brady and Buccaneers, who are 11-4, NFC South division champions and seeking to repeat as Super Bowl champions, play the Jets, who are 4-11 and seeking more signs of development from their rookie quarterback.

To say this is a step up in competition for Wilson and the Jets going from Lawrence and the Jags to Brady and the Bucs is as obvious as pointing out that Tampa Bay receiver Antonio Brown has had a few off-the-field incidents during his otherwise stellar NFL career.

There hasn’t been a lot to keep the interest of the Jets fan this season — other than watching Wilson’s development. That took an unfortunate pause for the four games Wilson missed with a knee injury, but he’s been back for five games and has looked like a better quarterback, throwing only two interceptions in those games (none in the last three) since returning from his injury.

The problem, though, is that Wilson hasn’t been producing enough touchdowns, throwing for three of them and rushing for four others in the past five games.

Zach Wilson and Tom Brady
Zach Wilson and Tom Brady
N.Y. Post: Charles Wenzelberg; AP

Baby steps, though.

Wilson was the better quarterback this past Sunday when matched up with Lawrence, who threw for more yards than Wilson did, but Wilson ran for 91 yards, including his electric 52-yard scoring jaunt, and made key throws when he needed them.

Wilson will not win Sunday’s game against Brady and the Bucs throwing for the 102 yards he had against the Jaguars. He and the Jets will need more.

Consider this: Brady enters the game having thrown 37 TD passes and for 4,580 yards this season and averages a league-high 305.2 passing yards per game.

Then this: The Buccaneers average 29.5 points per game this season, second most in the NFL.

And this: Wilson doesn’t have a single 300-yard passing game, averages 183 passing yards per game and has thrown seven TD passes in 11 games.

Seven TD passes is a pedestrian two-game total for Brady.

Wilson and the Jets are playing with house money anyway in what always has been a developmental season, so Sunday against Brady should, at its very least, be a great measuring-stick learning experience for Wilson, who’s studied Brady on tape.

Wilson revealed this month that he watched film of Brady before the Jets played the Eagles on Dec. 5 in an effort to pick up tips on how Brady worked against the Eagles defense when he played them earlier in the season.

“I thought it was really cool to see kind of how he went through his whole process, how he navigated the pocket, different things like that,” Wilson said at the time.

On Sunday, Wilson gets to see that process up close as Brady tries to dissect a Jets defense that has yielded 29.9 points per game this season, the most in the NFL.

That puts an added onus on Wilson to produce on the other side of the ball, because he knows Brady is going to get his. Wilson will likely need to produce four TDs — any way he can — for the Jets to simply remain competitive with the Super Bowl champs.

That’s a lot to ask of a 22-year-old kid who’s produced just 11 TDs in his 11 starts, up against Brady, who’s thrown 618 TD passes and for 83,784 yards in his remarkable career.

It, too, is a lot to ask playing against an aggressive Tampa Bay defense that’s ranked No. 9 in the NFL in points allowed (20.8 per game) and is led by former Jets head coach Todd Bowles, who’d surely like to send a holiday message to his former employer.

If you don’t think Bowles will be blitzing the bejesus out of Wilson, then you probably think Antonio Brown is a living saint.

The good news for the Jets is that Wilson has shown incremental improvements, particularly when it comes to his decision-making and quicker releases on his throws.

“He’s coming along, he’s getting more comfortable, he’s calmer back there,’’ Jets coach Robert Saleh said Monday. “He’s in a great headspace and it’s going to be fun to watch him grow, continue to grow.’’

A big part of that growth will take place this Sunday as he watches the GOAT operate from the opposite sideline at MetLife.

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