Oklahoma’s Career and Technology Education System is focused on developing a world-class workforce. This comprehensive system delivers educational experiences through 394 PK-12 school districts, 29 technology center districts, 16 Skills Centers sites and 32 adult basic education providers and to more than 6,900 businesses.
Industry experts talk about business trends and needed skills at an Oklahoma CareerTech Business, Marketing and IT Education Division Industry Futuring Panel
BMITE hosted the think tank groups earlier this month at Francis Tuttle Technology Center’s Business Innovation Campus. Participants discussed business trends affecting employees’ needed skill sets, skills necessary for workplace success, emerging careers and career pathways and big-picture topics employees need to know
MBA Research, a national career and technology education consultant, organized and facilitated three futuring panels for the business management, finance and marketing cluster areas. Oklahoma is a consortium member of MBA Research and uses the industry-validated national standards developed through its nationwide industry connections. MBA Research will compile all of the panels’ input and its research into a comprehensive report that will help refocus the efforts to build relevant career pathways.
Hussain Ali, state BPA officer from Putnam City High School, and Austin Long and Xavier Hamilton, state DECA officers from Latta High School, spoke to the groups about the connection CareerTech has with students. The officers’ input generated interest in the student organizations and how the industry representatives could get involved and support BPA/DECA activities.
Meals for the three days were sponsored by Gooden Group, Chickasaw Nation and donations collected by the Latta DECA chapter. Refreshments were sponsored by the OKACTE/BMITE teacher organization. A special thanks to these sponsors!
The CareerTech Skills Centers (CTSC) began operations in February of 1971 as the Inmate Training division of the Oklahoma Department of Vocational and Technical Education, now the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education.
During our 40+ years of serving incarcerated offenders in Oklahoma, Skills Centers have evolved from a division with a few occupational training programs to a large school system with a multitude of programs and services for both adult and juvenile offenders. The school system began at the Jim E. Hamilton CareerTech Skills Center inside the Jim E. Hamilton (formerly Ouachita) Correctional Center in Hodgen, Okla. Today, the CTSC offers services in state correctional facilities, juvenile detention facilities and community correctional facilities.
A successful transition from corrections to the workplace can mean a life of success for ex-offenders. To prepare offenders for successful transition, career technical education, employability and life skills are integrated into this educational delivery system. Skills centers students may seek certifications recognized by both state and national industries. Career Readiness Credentials (CRC) may be secured documenting work readiness skills many business and industry employers seek. The CTSC provides students with numerous interconnected and integrated components, each an integral part of preparing offenders for success in the workplace and in society.
The CTSC works in conjunction with the Oklahoma Department of Corrections (DOC) and Oklahoma Correctional Industries (OCI) to offer three U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Apprenticeship and Training, registered apprenticeship programs for offenders. These programs are each three-to-four years in length and are in the areas of meat-cutting, commercial food preparation and cabinet building.
In 1996, the CTSC entered into an agreement with the Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs (OJA) to provide training to juvenile offenders detained in Oklahoma facilities. The CTSC and OJA have partnered with the Associated General Contractors (AGC). The AGC, through its member contractors, also assists the CTSC in development of appropriate curriculum and learning activities.
The intent of this division of CareerTech is to continue to evolve as business and industry changes. The goal is to provide educational services that will cause skills centers students to seek and find success in the workplace and in society.
At the Oklahoma Department of CareerTech, our Skills Centers division offers job training to juveniles under the supervision of the Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs. Programs like Cedar Canyon teach both job skills and life skills.
What are the basic foundational skill sets that businesses are looking for in their next employees? Watch Dr. Marcie Mack’s interview with Jennifer Monies, Executive Director of Oklahoma Achieve, to learn more.