POCAHONTAS, AR  Jan. 24 â€” Eight BRTC TOPSS students have earned the ACT WorkKeys National Career Readiness Certificate.  Welding students from Hoxie, Sloan Hendrix, Pocahontas, Maynard, and Corning were awarded certificates ranging from bronze to gold.

According to the ACT National Career Readiness Certificate website, the National Career Readiness Certificate is a portable, evidence-based credential that certifies the essential skills for workplace success. Employers look for it from job candidates, whether they come directly from high school, work-based learning programs, or through postsecondary paths, because it is a valid predictor of job performance.

Black River Technical College’s Technical Opportunities and Pathways for Secondary Students (TOPSS) is a free program which enables high school juniors and seniors to get a head start on a career after high school.  Students can graduate with their high school diploma as well as with a BRTC degree, ready to go right into the workforce. 

Juniors and seniors at participating high schools are eligible to apply for TOPSS.  The BRTC TOPSS webpage identifies participating schools and available career pathways.   

For more information about TOPSS, visit http://www.blackrivertech.org/technical-opportunities-and-pathways-for-secondary-students-topss or contact Darenda Kersey, BRTC Coordinator of Concurrent Enrollment, at (870) 248-4000 or Darenda.Kersey@blackrivertech.edu.  

PHOTO:  Pictured from L-R: Cecil Green, Welding student from Hoxie HS-Bronze; Chase Malin, welding student from Sloan Hendrix-Silver; Ryan McVay, welding student from Pocahontas HS-Gold; Ruthy Lamborn-welding student from Maynard HS-Bronze; Aidan Ballard-welding student from Pocahontas HS-Bronze; Dalton Thompson-welding students from Corning HS-Gold; Ty Bippus-welding student from Corning HS-Silver


Black River Technical College is a 2-year community college in Pocahontas and Paragould, which offers associates degrees and certificates in general education and technical and career education.  The College houses one of the state’s law enforcement training academies (LETA) and fire science academies.  BRTC has 2,500 full- and part-time students.