CHELSEA, Manhattan (WABC) -- At public high schools across New York City, students are getting the chance to apprentice and gain career-ready work experience thanks to an educational program.
Imagine going to high school, then spending afternoons making money in an apprenticeship at a place like JP Morgan Chase.
"They are leaving high school at 1 p.m. Monday through Friday and getting paid $15 to $25 an hour," Chelsea CTE High School Principal Jaivelle Reed said. "These are 16- and 17-year-olds making that kind of money."
High school students in this New York City public high school program then graduate and go right into these jobs, full time.
Toshan Sukhandan is 19. He has already graduated and is living the life that he says is perfect for students like him who don't love the idea of college but want a great job.
Sukhandan says his parents like it right now after some convincing.
"I think people don't realize what the potential of an apprenticeship is yet, but for me, I've found nothing but success so far," he said.
Toshan works in computers at Accenture. He says college may still be in the cards, but for now, he is making great money and deciding where he wants to focus next.
In the meantime, he is learning life skills.
"We have learned about investments and how to use your money, how to invest it, 401(k)s, and IRAs," Sukhandan said.
Hundreds of students are in this unique career-training program.
Parents are on board as the kids move straight from high school into jobs in computers making $60,000 to $100,000 a year and this is also expanding to programs in teaching, nursing, and radiology.
Jade Grieve heads up all Career Connected Learning for New York City Public Schools. She says what is new is this is "job training" in computers, business and finance.
"We hear a lot about the skill shortage, the talent gap that employers are looking to solve, this one of those win-win opportunities," said Grieve, the chief of Student Pathways.
If students still want college after working a while, there are also some employers who will pay for that.
There are also some cases where employers will pay tuition, and this program is all about unlocking those opportunities.
It's a new way of looking at public school, graduating and what comes next.