Career Academy Network of Public Schools and Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Joseph County Set New Standards in Education

Career Academy Network of Public Schools and Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Joseph County Set New Standards in Education

The Career Academy Network of Public Schools (CANoPS) and the Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Joseph County (BGCSJC) are proud to announce recognition as this year's recipients of the Excellence in Community Collaboration Award, along with a $250,000 prize. This prestigious accolade from the Indiana Department of Education honors an innovative approach to K-12 education and exceptional community involvement.

CANoPS is redefining education through a series of groundbreaking initiatives that address the pressing educational needs of our community and beyond. Notable among these is the Future Lab, a state-of-the-art facility featuring advanced technologies such as multi-material 3D printers and laser cutting machines. This lab supports a dynamic STEAM curriculum, equipping students with critical skills for the modern workforce.

"With the funds from this award, we plan to increase teacher salaries, recognizing that the most important factor in student learning is a great teacher," says Jeremy Lugbill, Superintendent of CANoPS. "We are committed to investing in our educators to ensure continued excellence in our classrooms."

Key Achievements and Initiatives:

  • Expanded Career and Technical Education (CTE) Pathways: Responding to the Indiana Department of Education’s Explore, Engage, and Experience (3E) Grant in June 2022, CANoPS has broadened its CTE pathways, providing extensive career and technical training that aligns with future job market demands.
  • Success Academy at Boys & Girls Club (SABGC): Launched in Fall 2023, this K-5 school offers a unique blend of competency-based education within the supportive environment of the Boys & Girls Club, emphasizing personalized learning and career exploration.
  • Portage School of Leaders and BGCSJC Teen Center: Opened in January 2024 in downtown South Bend, this facility is a hub for both academic excellence and career readiness, offering a wealth of resources to support comprehensive student development.

These pioneering efforts extend beyond K-12 education, addressing broader community needs through adult training programs certified by the U.S. Department of Labor. This approach is enhancing the economic vitality of the region, creating a robust pipeline of skilled workers.

Jacqueline Kronk, BGCSJC CEO, highlights the significance of this partnership: "Our collaboration with CANoPS is a testament to our shared vision to serve all children in our community. By complementing the essential work that schools do during the day, we provide a supportive and enriching environment where every student has the opportunity to thrive. Together, we are committed to creating pathways that not only support academic success but also nurture the personal growth and future ambitions of every child and teen."

CANoPS and BGCSJC remain dedicated to further advancing their initiatives, reinforcing their commitment to providing inclusive and transformative educational opportunities. Their ongoing efforts promise to cultivate future leaders and innovators, ready to excel in an ever-changing world.


The Career Academy Network of Public Schools is dedicated to providing students with an innovative and comprehensive education that prepares them for success in college, career, and life. Our network consists of specialized academies focused on a variety of career pathways, including healthcare, information technology, engineering, business, and the arts.

Our mission is to empower students through rigorous academic programs, hands-on learning experiences, and strong industry partnerships. We strive to create an inclusive and supportive environment where every student can thrive and achieve their full potential. For additional information and enrollment details, visit  


The Boys & Girls Clubs of St. Joseph County, a mainstay within the community, celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2024, has enabled and inspired young people, especially those who need Clubs most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Established in 1974, BGCSJC serves more than 3,000 young people annually at 33 Club sites across St. Joseph, White, Fulton, Pulaski and Cass Counties and has established before and after care and summer programs in partnership with 12 school districts. For additional information and enrollment details, please visit