21st Century Academy community partners have a direct impact on developing tomorrow’s work force. Working alongside faculty and staff, each partner brings a new perspective on the industry’s current trends and helps ensure that Olathe students are prepared for their future.

Animal Health Academy:
Mahaffie Farmstead
KC Zoo
Shatto Dairy
Kansas Department of Wildlife & Fisheries
Cedar Cover Conservancy

Business Finance Academy:
Americas Springsted, Inc.
Arvest Bank
Bank of Blue Valley
Bank of the Prairie
Barth Financial Services
Capitol Federal
Farmers Insurance
University of Kansas – KU Edwards Campus
State Farm

Civic Leadership Academy/Leadership Program:
City of Olathe
Johnson County District Attorney’s Office
University of Kansas School of Law
Emporia State University
Blue Pearl Animal Hospital
Children’s Mercy Hospital
Olathe Medical Center
Olathe Public Schools
Inclusions Connections
HCA Midwest
Amaze Boutique

Computer Science Academy:
Community America Credit Union
Missouri University of Science an dTechnology (MS&T)

Design Academy:
American Institute of Architects Kansas City
Burns & McDonnell
Blackmore and Glundt
BSE Structural Engineers LLC
Crawford Architecture
Dimensional Innovations
DLR Group
Garmin International
Hallmark Cards, Inc.
Henderson Engineers, Inc.
Hollis and Miller
HTK Architects
Insight 2 Design
Klover Architects
Odimo LLC
Olathe Parks & Recreatoin
Pittsburg State University
Pulse Design Group
R&D / Leverage
Smith & Loveless Inc.
Strategy LLC
TK Architects International
University of Kansas
Yellow Fan Studio

Distinguished Scholars Academy:
American Society for Metals
Burns and mcDonnell
Carninal Health
Danyelle Ferguson, Author
Dole Institute of Politics
Dulces Jewelry
Fine Arts Department, JCCC
Fine Arts Department , KU
Johnson County Library
Justin Marable, Studio Artist
Kansas State University
Kansas State University – Olathe
Lawrence Arts Center
Mike Albrechtsen, Studio Artist
Oklahoma Partnership for Expanded Learning
Orbis Biosciences
Rainy Day Books
Representative, Cindy Holscher, Ks House of Rep
Royal Institution of Great Britain
U.S. Department of Energy
University of Kansas Medical Center
University of Kansas Spencer Research Library
University of Kansas UKanTeach Program

e-Communication Academy:
Perceptive Software
Premier Studio
Savannah School of Design
Sir Speedy
Cumulus Broadcasting
Sound Guy
Digital Lagoon
Trinity Animation
Video Soup LLC
Johnson County Community College
Kansas City Art Institute
KCPT Channel 19
University of Kansas
Condorde Career College
Feed His Lambs
Frontier Trail Dance Team
Olathe Public Schools
Mission Bowl
Yellow Barn
Herwig DDS
Olathe Rotary
State Farm
Olathe Public Library

Engineering Academy:
Bennett Tool and Die
Black & Veatch
Castle Creations
Kansas City Kansas Community College
K-Ter Imagineering
Luminous Neon
NCS Precision Manufacturing
The University of Kansas School of Engineering

Geoscience Academy:
City of Olathe
Ft. Hays State University
UkanTeach – University of Kansas
Sea Life
KSU Horticulture
Ernie Miller Nature Center

Green Tech Academy:
Johnson County Community College
City of Olathe Public Works
Kansas State University
University of Kansas
Pinnacle Career Institute
Olathe Parks and Recreation
Burns & McDonnell
Environmental Protection Agency

Medical Professions Academy:
University of Kansas Medical Center
K-State Olathe
Johnson County Community College Biotechnology Program
Stowers Institute
UMKC Dental School
UMKC Medical School
UMKC Nursing School
KU Pharmacy School
Olathe Medical Center
KU Edwards Campus Biotechnology Program

Public Safety Academy:
Olathe Police Department
Olathe Fire Department
Johnson County Community College
Johnson County Emergency Management & Communications
Johnson County Med-Act
Johnson County Sheriff’s Office
University of Kansas
City of Olathe
United States Secret Service
Federal Bureau of Investigations Kansas City Division
Johnson County District Attorney’s Office
Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism

Sports Medicine and Athletic Training Academy:
Olathe Medical Center
Children’s Mercy Hospital
Kansas University Medical Center
Johnson County Orthopedics
Johnson County MED-ACT
Phye Family Dentistry
Hanger Prosthetic
Overland Park Regional
Fulk Chiropractic
University of Kansas Strength and Conditioning Department
Kansas State University
Johnson County Community College
Mid America Nazarene University
Baker University
Olathe Parks and Recreation
68 Sports
Olathe Fire Department
Prairie Life Fitness

  • Paige Adams, Research Assistant Professor, K-State Olathe Innovation Campus
  • Michael Ashcraft, 5th District Commissioner, Johnson County Government
  • Scott Barton, Design Director, Hollis & Miller Architects
  • Bill Blauwiekel, Civil/Structural Engineering Dept. Manager, Black & Veatch
  • Nate Borozinski, Manager Research & Development, Dimensional Innovations
  • Jim Bradford, Director of Communications, Olathe Chamber of Commerce
  • Mike Butaud, Police Admin. Manager, Olathe Police Department
  • Steve Case, Director Center for Science Education, University of Kansas
  • Chris Claussen, Business Program Manager Academic Advisor, KU Edwards
  • David Cook, Vice Chancellor, KU Edwards
  • Brad Cornell, COO, Olathe Chamber of Commerce
  • Paula Cupertino, Associate Professor, JUNTOS Center, Kansas University Medical Center
  • Nancy Damron, Dean, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, MidAmerica Nazarene University
  • Jeff DeGraffenreid, Fire Chief and Dir. Emer. Management, Olathe Fire Dept.
  • Christa Dubill, Evening News Anchor, 41 KSHB-TV Action News
  • Chris Durkin, Chief Engineer, Honeywell
  • Mark Dwyer, Dir. Rehab Services & SportsNet, Olathe Medical Center
  • Casee Eisele, Project Manager, John Deere
  • Craig Fischer, Manger of IT Projects & Appl. Services, Terracon Consulting Engineers
  • Ken Fischer, Professor Mechanical Engineering, University of Kansas
  • Lisa Friis, Associate Professor Mechanical Bioengineering, University of Kansas
  • Richard Fort, Interim Dean, Technology Division, Johnson County Community College
  • Rick Gasaway, Electrical Engineer; LEED Green Associate, Black & Veatch
  • Liz Ginther, Talent Development Coordinator, Cerner
  • Stephanie Graham, Sustainability Manager, Burns & McDonnell
  • Denise Griffey, Director of Career Pathways, Johnson County Community College
  • Ben Hart, VP, Govt. Audit & Consulting, Alan, Gibbs & Houlik
  • Natalie Hartig, Assist. Chief of Education, MED-ACT Johnson County
  • Steve Howe, District Attorney, Johnson County Government
  • Nancy Ingram, Board of Trustees, Johnson County Community College
  • Debbie Jasiczek, Software Engineer Manager, Garmin Intl.
  • Cliff Jenkins, Business Operations Consultant, RSA Security
  • Mike Jensen, VP Marketing & External Affairs, Olathe Medical Center
  • Jennifer Jordan, Director, Business Career Services, University of Kansas
  • Randy Logan, Program Advisor Biotechnology, KU Edwards
  • Alex Marshall, Industrial Design, Insight2Design
  • Martha McCabe, Director of the KC STEM Alliance
  • Sophia McCall, Environmental, Health and Safety, APAC
  • Michael McCloud, VP of Academic Affairs/CAO, Johnson County Community College
  • Lauren McEnaney, Degree in 3 Advisor, University of Kansas
  • Jennifer Mehnert, Human Resources, TVH
  • Steve Menke, Chief of Police, Olathe Police Department
  • Laurie Minard, VP Human Resources, Garmin Intl.
  • Tes Mehring, Provost, Baker University
  • Darren Odum, Dir. of Business Development, Olathe Medical Center
  • Justin Pippitt, Manager, Design and Planning, Westar Energy
  • Dana Reinert, Program Manager for Academic Affairs, K-State Olathe Innovation Campus
  • Emily Rhoden, K-12 Educational Outreach, Burns & McDonnell
  • Ralph Richardson, Dean and CEO, K-State Olathe Innovation Campus
  • Cliff Rippe, Senior Director, RSA Security
  • Debra Ryder, Director of Education, Kansas City Zoo
  • Jennifer Sanborn, Marketing Manager, 1st National Bank
  • Paul Schwartz, Senior Manager, Cerner
  • Matt Seimears, Dept. Chair Associate Professor, Emporia State University
  • Jay Scott, Assistant Director, Kansas State Department of Education
  • Ron Shaver, City Attorney, City of Olathe
  • Susan Sherman, Assist. City Manager, City of Olathe
  • Joe Sopcich, President, Johnson County Community College
  • John Southard, President CEO, Hollis & Miller Architects
  • Rick Stuckey, Life Support Specialist, Kansas City Zoo
  • Els Thermote, CEO, TVH Parts Company
  • Jason Tucker, Reg. Sales Manager, John Deere
  • Joseph Valenzuela, Lead Electrical Engineer, Kiewit Corporation
  • Randy VanNess, Mgr. Operations & Maintenance, Westar Energy
  • Cindy VonFeldt, Executive Director, Olathe Public Schools Foundation
  • Troy Wade, Business Development, DLR Group
  • David Younger, Claims Contact Center Manager, Farmers Insurance
  • Alyssa Zimmerman, Supervisor ISC, Honeywell

Olathe Public Schools Staff

  • John Allison, Superintendent
  • Jessica Dain, Assistant Superintendent
  • Jim McMullen, Assistant Superintendent
  • Brent Yeager, Assistant Superintendent
  • Maggie Kolb, Director of Communication
  • Heather Schoonover, Community Development Liaison

The goal of each Olathe 21st Century High School Academy community partnership is to enhance student learning and the quality of the future workforce. Uniquely designed to meet the needs of the partner and the partnering academy(or academies) there are a variety of partnership areas offered by the Olathe Public Schools.

Gift-In-Kind Donations

Gift-in-kind donations allow the 21st Century High School Academies to introduce students to the equipment, software and materials that are standard in your industry.

Guest Speakers

Guest speakers help reinforce program lessons and bring relevance to program curriculum. Guest speakers visit classrooms, give program wide lectures and participate in expert panels. Speaker guides are available to assist with planning.


Mentors serve in a variety of capacities throughout the academies. From mentoring students through competition preparation to working one-on-one with a student for his/her senior project, the level of involvement is determined by the individual and program.

Shadowship Sites

The opportunity to tour a business for an hour or spend a limited amount of time learning from professionals allows students to connect their classroom learning to the future goals. Shadowship site arrangements vary by academy and site location. A handout is available to assist with planning.

Teacher Externship Sites

Teacher Externships give program instructors an inside look at how their curriculum is applied in various industries. Teacher externs have the opportunity to work alongside business/industry professionals and take their experiences back to the classroom. Businesses and organizations have the opportunity to have a direct impact on what is being taught in the classroom to the future workforce.

Internship Sites

Internship sites serve as an opportunity for business and organizations in the community to connect with what students are learning in high school to add value to the educational experience. Internships serve as a capstone experience to the 21st Century High School Academies. Students benefit from workplace experience and exposure to real-world projects, while businesses and organizations gain valuable talent and are able to grow their future workforce.

Kendall Burnett, Sports Medicine & Athletic Training graduate, has always had a passion for sports. While in junior high, Burnett found out that for medical reasons he would no longer be able to participate on the field and he set out to find a way to stay connected to his passion. He found the Sports Medicine & Athletic Training Academy hosted at Olathe North. During his time in the Sports Medicine academy, Burnett worked alongside professional athletic trainers, helped in the assessment and rehabilitation of student athlete injuries, and held a place on the Sports Medicine competition team in Seattle. For his senior project, Burnett opted for an internship with Johnson County Orthopedic. His internship has afforded him unique opportunities including the chance to scrub-in and observe an orthopedic surgery at Olathe Medical Center. He was one of the first Olathe interns to step into the operating room during an internship experience. He has also maintained a rigorous senior class schedule by taking AP English, Advanced Creative Writing, Algebra 3/Trigonometry and Chemistry. He was also given the opportunity to work on the Tuskegee sidelines during the black college senior game this past December.

“Kendall has the perseverance and fortitude to attain any goal he sets for himself. Through the rigor of the Sports Med preparatory curriculum, Kendall is ensured a successful college career!” said, Barbie Ginivan, Sports Medicine and Athletic Training facilitator when asked about Burnett and his future.

All of his hard work has paid off and Burnett is currently attending Kansas State University.

The Olathe Medical Center continues to bring hands-on experiences and exposure to health careers to Olathe 21st Century High School students. On Feb. 4, 2016 the Board of Education recognized Olathe Medical Center for continued support of students through the Bridging Education and Medicine (BEAM) partnership.

This partnership allows for unique student experiences including job shadow rotations and internships through the hospital and other medical facilities. The BEAM Shadow Night is another annual event open to students to experience the behind the scenes at OMC in a variety of departments from surgery to pharmacy. Students also have the opportunity to attend the annual BEAM breakfast that includes a panel of doctors and professionals answering student questions regarding what he or she did to prepare for a career in the health care industry and exploring what a typical day in the field looks like.

“The Olathe 21st Century Programs exemplify the forward thinking, nationally recognized commitment the citizens of Johnson County have for providing quality education and career opportunities for their children. We are very pleased to collaborate with the Olathe School District through their 21st Century Program in Animal Health. This is a natural partnership creating synergy between K-State’s world renowned expertise in animal health education and research, and the career opportunities within the Animal Health Corridor. It is with a sense of pride that the developing K-State Olathe campus partners with Olathe’s 21st Century Programs to promote continued collaboration and synergy in animal health and beyond.”
Dr. Dan Richardson, Chief Executive Officer K-State Olathe Innovation Campus

“DLR Group was delighted to provide job shadow opportunities for several Olathe East High School Environmental Design students. The students assigned to us were respectful, engaging and eager to learn about the architectural profession. Our mentors tell me that their students were courteous, inquisitive and appreciative of their time. Our staff loved spending time with these bright, energetic kids, and is looking forward to another opportunity to mentor Olathe students!”
Andy Anderson, Principal Architect DLR Group

“The 21st Century programs allow students to grow, expand, and fulfill their dreams, while giving them a competitive advantage for the next level of their education.”
Frank Devocelle, Retired CEO/President Olathe Medical Center