Apex High academy named best in the nation

The Academy of Information Technology at Apex High School has earned the National Academy Foundation’s Sanford I. Weill Academy of Excellence Award.

The award recognizes the National Academy Foundation (NAF) academy exhibiting the highest standards for public-private partnerships for the benefit of students.

The Sanford I. Weill Academy of Excellence Award was established this year to commemorate Weill’s 80th birthday. Weill, a distinguished banker and financier, founded NAF in 1982. There are over 500 NAF academies in 39 states, the District of Columbia and the US Virgin Islands.

Apex High School AOIT is a standout academy, with excellence extending to its corporate partnerships and engagement. The 27-member advisory board is comprised primarily of business representatives from companies such as Kelly IT, SAS, American Airlines, IBM and Qualcomm and has a particularly strong partnership with Fidelity. There is an alumni representative on the board, as well as an internship committee that typically places 100 percent of eligible students in internships each year. Advisory board members serve as judges for academy competitions, provide job shadowing opportunities, and other work-based learning opportunities.

At Apex AOIT there are 90 students per class. Each year there are approximately 250 applicants to the academy and the spots are filled by lottery. They boast an exceptional 100 percent graduation rate of NAF students, and all graduating students go on to post-secondary education.


At the ceremony to receive the award are John DeFazio – Apex AOIT Advisory Board Chair (Senior Manager Strategic Outsourcing Delivery, IBM); Matt Wight – Principal, Apex High School; Robert C. Dughi -National Academy Foundation Board of Directors (Executive Chair, U.S. Retirement Partners); Kim MacDonald – Apex AOIT Career Academy Coordinator; Jeff Derdan – Apex AOIT Career Academy Teacher; Ashley White – Apex AOIT Career Academy Teacher; Susan Szep – Apex AOIT Career Academy Teacher; JD Hoye – President, National Academy Foundation; and Ken Nagel – Apex AOIT Career Academy Teacher.

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