National Academy Foundation Program

DCI is a member of the DC Career Academy Network (DCCAN), partnering with the National Academy Foundation (NAF) to offer an Academy of Information Technology program for high school students from 10th grade up. Students can begin taking IT Academy classes in 10th grade, and if they are excited about the program, they can continue in the academy by choosing the IB Career Program for 11th and 12th grade.

Benefits for Students

Students who complete the IT Academy course of study will:

Earn career certifications in hardware/software or digital media equivalent to an entry-level job in IT OR earn 2 full college credits in programming

Participate in a paid, 120 hour internship the summer of their junior year in an IT-related company

Earn NAFTrack Certification, a credential which gives students preferential treatment in the hiring process and higher starting salaries for dozens of companies, including Xerox, Cisco, AT&T, Verizon, JP Morgan, Moody’s, and Hewlett Packard.

Course of Study

The IT Academy and IB Career Program together have the following course requirements:

  • Students must pass all their classes necessary for graduation. Students will take IB level math, science, english, history, and foreign language.
  • In place of their elective classes, students will take classes in a combination of hardware/ network engineering, digital media, or programming.
  • Personal and Professional Skills (PPS): A two-year course teaching students specific skills for workplace and college readiness, such as professional etiquette, writing, self-management, financial literacy, resume-writing, and interview skills
  • Reflective Project: An extended writing project about an ethical dilemma in IT. Students work on this over the course of both years in their PPS class and at home.
  • Service Learning: Service work to the broader community, related to IT content if possible. Students plan their service work in PPS and engage in service in and out of school hours.

Questions about the program?

Parents and students make the choice about joining the academy as early as 10th grade. If you have questions about the program, contact the Academy Coordinator, Shane Donovan.