Door Kewaunee Student Builders Receive Awards and Scholarship

The Door Kewaunee Business & Education Partnership (DKBEP) honored the achievements of fourteen area youth at an open house held on Wednesday night for the 4th Annual DKBEP High School Home Construction Program.

Student builder Aaron Zak, a senior from Gibraltar High School, took home the Miles Zastrow Excellence in Building and Achievement Award. In a surprise announcement made by Miles’ son Ben, a scholarship fund was also created for recipients of this award to receive $1,000 for future educational endeavors in a trades field.

Fourteen high school students representing Gibraltar, Sevastopol, Sturgeon Bay, and Southern Door school districts joined forces with the Door County Home Builders Association (DCHBA), Northeast Wisconsin Technical College (NWTC) and the DKBEP to build a home from start to finish during the 2010/11 school year. Participating students were involved in all aspects of home construction under the direct guidance of a NWTC instructors, Roger Mayer and the late Miles Zastrow. Each student has earned 16 transcripted credits for advanced placement in the Wood Tech Technical Diploma one-year program at NWTC. The home currently has an accepted offer with an official closing date set for today, May 26th. Revenue generated from the home sale will offset program costs and any remaining will be used as seed money toward future DKBEP High School Home Construction projects.

“Not only did we honor the achievements of our area youth and the adversity they had to work through to complete this home, but we are also honoring the legacy that Miles left behind. He was an integral part of the success of this program and his contributions through the years will never be forgotten through this award and the scholarship program in his name,” said DKBEP Manager Tara LeClair. “He was a man who gave of his time and talents selflessly; it is very fitting that he continues to give in his afterlife”.

Miles Zastrow had a passion for teaching and educating students. After 34 years as a technology education teacher at Sturgeon Bay Middle and High Schools, Miles retired from teaching in a school environment in 2007, only to lead four groups of students to build homes as part of the DKBEP High School Home Construction program in his retirement years. Miles successfully instructed students on how to build houses in Sturgeon Bay and Luxemburg. After a courageous battle with cancer, Miles passed away in December 2010, midway through the fourth student-built home project.

The Door Kewaunee Business & Education Partnership was created in 1999 to facilitate students acquiring the skills and behaviors necessary to succeed in the ever-changing, global workforce. The vision of DKBEP is to prepare students for careers and lifelong learning through the partnering of education, business and community. Opportunities are created for educators to increase knowledge and “hands-on” experience with business and career learning, and for businesses to define their long and short-term labor needs and help integrate “work-based experience” into the school curriculum.

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