Weyerhaeuser High School, Weyerhaeuser, Wisconsin
Weyerhaeuser High School is located in Weyerhaeuser, Wisconsin, a small town that does not have many local businesses. To encourage the development of local industry and to prepare students for work and future education, the school has developed a solar-powered lumber-drying business called the Blue Hills Manufacturing Partnership. This business is managed by high school students during their junior and senior years. They run the operation in addition to taking academic classes at the school.
In the classes at Weyerhaeuser, many teachers have integrated workplace training and skills as well as applied lessons relating to the Blue Hills Manufacturing Partnership. For example, trigonometry/pre-calculus classes analyze kiln costs and profits, graph solar kiln temperature data, and prepare a market analysis to determine cost and profit of manufactured wooden boxes. English and communications classes develop resumes, practice interviewing skills, write sales and marketing letters, and learn public relations protocol. Ecology classes study forest management, write position papers defending their stand on forest use, and learn to read a topographical map. Art classes design sales brochures and business cards.
Tindall, Gugerty, Phelps, Weis, and Dhuey (1996) describe the goals of this project:
The learning objectives of the Blue Hills Manufacturing Partnership are as follows:
Students receive a share of stock for each semester of participation in the project. Stock accumulates until the senior class trip; then it is exchanged for the face value of the worth of each share, based on the success of the business.
Both students and teachers agree that the Blue Hills Manufacturing Partnership has made learning more interesting and relevant. The students have learned practical workplace skills that will make them more valuable employees. In addition, many students will be able to gain entry level or advanced placement in various courses at Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College.
For further information on the Blue Hills Manufacturing Partnership at Weyerhaeuser High School, refer to Entrepreneurship Through Integration (Manor, 1995).