Essentials Program in Academic and Career Readiness



 The goal of serving students with disabilities is to assist the students to become literate, obtain the necessary skills for employment and economic self-sufficiency, and to transition to postsecondary education and training through career pathways. 

About the Program:

The Essentials Program offers free Academic and Career Readiness classes to those who function at or below the 8th grade level and who wish to improve their reading, writing, math, and computer literacy skills and have a desire to work. Our goal is to retain students for a duration of 2 years so that they can take advantage of every opportunity we have to offer.

Adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities are encouraged to apply.

Our Enrollment Process

  • Have the desire to work or volunteer
  • Call and schedule an interview with the program coordinator
  • Achieve valid scores on the TABE placement test
  • Present a picture ID and Social Security card

Additional Opportunities for Essentials students

Students will have the chance to enroll in an additional Career Pathway classes. These classes serve to introduce career opportunities while teaching our students the skills needed in order to succeed in those careers.  We offer an exploration class each session in order to maintain accessibility for students who are interested in different fields of study and work.

Our career pathways are based on local and regional employment needs. These additional and optional pathway classes will earn students a Continuing Education Certificate upon successful completion. **Associated fees apply**

  • Hospitality and Tourism- This course provides an overview of the hospitality and tourism industry. Covered topics include customer service, sanitation and food safety, and career opportunities.
  • Computer Basics- This course is designed to introduce students to basic computer functions and usage. Emphasis is placed on developing basic personal computer skills.
  • Healthcare Basics 1- This course is designed to introduce students to basic healthcare application concepts. Coursework can include but is not limited to medical terminology, infection control, hygiene, medical emergencies, personal care, nutrition, and career opportunities.

For more information, please contact:

Kathy Martinez – Essentials/HSE Coordinator
Cape Fear Community College
Academic and Career Readiness Department
411 N. Front St.
Wilmington, NC 28401

McLeod Building; S-108A

To enroll in Adult High School, GED® Test Preparation Classes, or Basic Skills Plus:

Age 18 or older:

  1. Bring a valid identification card (driver's license or state ID card).
  2. Know your Social Security number or bring your card.
  3. Obtain your official high school transcript in a sealed envelope.
  4. Attend the next registration and orientation.

Ages 16 or 17:

  1. Complete steps above.
  2. Bring your parent or legal guardian to registration.
  3. Obtain and complete a notarized parental consent form (available at CFCC's Wilmington campus or ).
  4. Bring a completed official school withdrawal form signed by the superintendent or designee (available at CFCC's Wilmington campus or ).