Category Archives: Technology Centers

Oklahoma Technology Centers Virtually Teaching Students, Helping Businesses

Working remotely and having adjusted work environments to fight COVID-19 doesn’t DeliveryArms.jpjgmean Oklahoma CareerTech’s delivery arms have stopped offering services.

Like the state’s preK-12th grade public schools, CareerTech’s statewide network of technology centers has entered the world of distance learning for its secondary and postsecondary students. The tech centers are continuing to provide education — including classes and assignments — through web-based technology and, if needed, paper packets.

An auto collision and refinishing instructor at Metro Technology Centers in Oklahoma City is allowing students to see what he is working on with live feeds from his shop at his home. A diesel technology instructor at Gordon Cooper Technology Center in Shawnee is creating videos of repairs he is doing in his own shop in addition to having Zoom meetings, assignments and quizzes.

“The good from this is finding yet another way to teach,” said Ed Jolly of Gordon Cooper Tech.

A service careers instructor at Canadian Valley Technology Center’s El Reno campus has created YouTube instructional videos and is giving his students assignments based on each video’s information. Some are hands-on, like mowing lawns or using certain landscape tools, said instructor Jayson Floyd, and others are written.

Some of his students, however, do not have internet access, he said.

“For those students, I will be calling them three times a week and directing them to a hands-on activity they can perform within their house that is related to what I teach,” he said.

ODCTE is posting tech centers’ distance learning plans at okcareer.tech/Techplans. Students can contact their technology centers to receive information about the tech center’s distance learning plans and requirements.

In addition, the technology centers continue to offer training to Oklahoma business and industry clients when possible. Businesses with workforce training needs can contact their local technology centers to explore distance learning options.

To help support career and technology educators across the state, the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education has instructional resources, okcareer.tech/CTinstruct, and guidance on financial, educational and other issues as well at okcareer.tech/CTFAQs.

“Oklahoma CareerTech is here to support our stakeholders, and we will make it through this situation together while continuing to provide education that meets the needs of our students and our state,” said Marcie Mack, ODCTE state director.

The Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education provides leadership and resources and assures standards of excellence for a comprehensive statewide system of career and technology education. The system offers programs and services in 29 technology center districts operating on 58 campuses, 394 K-12 school districts, 16 Skills Centers campuses that include three juvenile facilities and 32 adult basic education service providers.

The agency is governed by the State Board of Career and Technology Education and works closely with the State Department of Education and the State Regents for Higher Education to provide a seamless educational system for all Oklahomans.

CareerTech Champions

Dean Baker – Francis Tuttle Technology Center

It’s man over machine in this high-tech classroom.

Dean Baker didn’t want to teach the way he’d been taught. The manufacturing-Dean Bakermachining technology instructor at Francis Tuttle Technology Center said his instructor gave his students a blueprint and said, “Please write.” The students wrote code, and the instructor made corrections where they were needed.

That was 40 years ago, and today the self-proclaimed G-code guy is teaching his students to write similar G-codes that manipulate machines to perform tasks. But today’s students are working with a high-tech machine powered by the Siemens SINUMERIK 828D control, which is giving his students game-changing skills that employers seek.

The 828D has a conversational feature that teaches students what is happening behind the machines when they push a button. Conversational computer numerical control machines have come about as a result of a shortage of workers qualified to write code.

Baker serves on the SkillsUSA board of directors, and the forward-thinking instructor was recently highlighted in Technical Education Post, a journal for technical, technology and STEM education.

At Francis Tuttle, Dean stresses three things with his students:

  • Safety – the most important lesson he teaches.
  • Being mindful of others and their surroundings.
  • Problem-solving.

Dean said he borrowed his philosophy of teaching from Albert Einstein, who said, “Education is not the learning of facts. It’s rather the training of the mind to think.”

Related content: Tech Ed Magazine

 

Oklahoma CareerTech: Developing a World-Class Workforce

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.

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CareerTech Champions

Steven Rogers – DECA, High Plains Technology Center

Technology center instructor literally grew up in the CareerTech family.

THEN: As a small child, Steven Rogers says, he ran the hallways of High Plains Technology Center while his dad taught in a classroom there. Having grown up on that campus, it wasn’t much of a stretch for him to take classes there as soon as he was old StevenRogersenough.

Steven chose marketing and management classes at High Plains Tech and joined DECA, the CareerTech student organization for marketing students.

He said his two years in DECA taught him:

  • Public speaking, through competitions and events.
  • The importance of good customer service.
  • How to be more self-confident, something his marketing instructor emphasized.
  • Business management skills.

After graduation, Steven used those management skills to open three businesses in five years.

I think students coming out of CareerTech have a better understanding of the mechanics of a business,” he said.

NOW: Steven needed to make a career change for personal reasons and decided to join the High Plains family once again, this time as an instructor. He was denied that opportunity three times, but he did not give up. With his fourth application, Steven was hired.

“I have a passion for teaching, and I love the CareerTech family as my own,” he said.

Steven is now the industrial coordinator at High Plains Tech. Also a fireman and EMT, Steven teaches fire, industrial and wind rescue classes.

“CareerTech helps students develop strong work ethics.”  Steven Rogers

 

What It Takes – Duncan Regional Hospital

It takes partnerships to power our economy. Check out how Oklahoma CareerTech works with Duncan Regional Hospital to train the workers they need, from the area they serve.

CareerTech Horizon Podcast: “Driving Progress”

Do you remember your first car, and how liberating it was to drive on your own? Do you remember the first time that car stopped working?CThorizon6

In this episode, CareerTech Horizon hits the road, driving through the many parts of this growing, diverse industry in our state.

  • Our first stop is the Oklahoma City Auto Show, bringing together auto dealers and enthusiasts to spread the word about the opportunities of the auto industry to students.
  • We visit an auto service education program mixing alternative fuels into the curriculum, and the importance of playing it safe around natural gas, electric, and hybrid cars.
  • We fire up the not-so modern marvel of the internal combustion engine, and the oil-based fuels that power it. A journalist shares his documentary, seeking the truth about the oil industry.
  • Finally, we look at the bigger picture of Oklahoma’s auto manufacturing industry, and how state leaders are planning to build it up all over the Sooner State.

You can follow us on Twitter @CT_Horizon, or find us on Facebook.

You can also visit our website, cthorizon.org for show notes, discussion, and bonus content, “Beyond Your Horizon.”

CareerTech Horizon Podcast: “Growing Partnerships”

How did you learn the skills you have now?

Are the skills you know still relevant today? Will they remain relevant in the future?

In this episode, CareerTech Horizon examines the growing partnerships between industry and education. They dive into what businesses are doing to keep instructors on the same page, and how these instructors use that knowledge to cultivate the workforce they’ll be hiring from.

  • American Airlines donates one of its passenger jets to CareerTech, so students in their aviation programs can work hands-on with real aircraft.
  • A summer camp for teachers brings educators behind the scenes at businesses their students may one day work for.
  • “Futuring Panels” facilitate conversation on where the industry is heading, and how educators can keep up.

You can follow CareerTech Horizon on Twitter @CT_Horizon, or find them on Facebook.

You can also visit their website, cthorizon.org for show notes, discussion, and bonus content, “Beyond Your Horizon.”

Tri County Tech partners with Boys & Girls Club of Nowata for Success

Nowata Boys and Girls Club

The Boys & Girls Club of Nowata and Tri County Tech have announced a partnership to construct a joint-use facility in Nowata aimed at inspiring children and adults to achieve their full potential by providing quality youth development services and life changing learning experiences.

The state-of-the-art facility, approximately 22,500 square feet in size, will be constructed at the site of the existing Boys & Girls Club. This facility will include dedicated spaces for both Tri County and the Boys & Girls Club of Nowata, along with shared spaces such as classrooms, a commercial kitchen and community meeting rooms.

“Tri County’s presence in Nowata will help spur economic development for existing and future businesses by providing a state-of-the-art training facility. Partnering with the Boys & Girls Club will provide young people with a unique opportunity for a life-changing learning experience. We are excited about this initiative and look forward to watching Nowata thrive.”

Lindel Fields   |   Tri County Tech Superintendent & CEO

Francis Tuttle Students Receive Lemelson-MIT Program InvenTeam Grant

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Francis Tuttle instructor Brad Sanders.

A team of Francis Tuttle Technology Center engineering, biosciences and medicine students is one of 14 InvenTeams nationwide to receive grants up to $10,000 from the Lemelson-MIT Program. The grants fund original inventions addressing local and worldwide problems.

Francis Tuttle’s InvenTeam of nine high school students led by instructors Brad Sanders and Jared Keester was awarded the $10,000 grant to fund its proposed invention that would disinfect airport bins of harmful bacteria and viruses.

“Our students applied incredible creativity and ingenuity throughout the application process,” said Sanders. “They identified a global threat to public health and proposed a clear and achievable way to solve it. We are honored to have been selected and are excited to get to work.”

Lemelson-MIT InvenTeams are teams of high school students, educators and mentors that receive grants of up to $10,000 each to invent technological solutions to real-world problems. The Lemelson-MIT Program celebrates outstanding inventors and inspires young people to pursue creative lives and careers through invention. The national InvenTeam initiative aims to inspire a new generation of inventors and encourage an inventive culture in schools and communities.

Oklahoma CareerTech Develops World-Class Workforce

Thelogo Oklahoma Career and Technology Education System focuses every day on developing a world-class workforce.

“Oklahoma CareerTech partners with business and educational institutions to enhance career awareness, increase educational attainment and meet the needs of our state,” said Marcie Mack, Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education state director. “CareerTech is an integral part of Oklahoma’s economy.”

The Oklahoma CareerTech System is celebrating CareerTech Education Month in February. Gov. Kevin Stitt recently issued a proclamation declaring this month as Career and Technical Education Appreciation Month in Oklahoma.

Stitt has called Oklahoma CareerTech “a system that has been nimble and robust in helping us train the workforce.”

The CareerTech System delivers educational experiences through a network of 394 PK-12 school districts, 29 technology center districts, 16 skills center sites in correctional facilities and 32 adult basic education providers. In fiscal year 2019, CareerTech’s enrollments totaled more than 550,000, and CareerTech System graduates added more than $3.5 billion to Oklahoma’s economy.

The 29 technology center districts have 58 campuses that offer career training to high school and adult students, along with training and assistance for Oklahoma’s businesses and industries.

High school students can attend the technology centers in their districts for free, learning skills that will help them land good jobs after school and also position them to continue their education after graduation. Certifications earned through CareerTech courses give students entrance into higher-paying careers, which can also help them pursue higher education without incurring excessive debt.

Adult students at technology centers can learn new skills and earn certificates and credentials to get jobs, change careers or advance in their current careers. In FY18, CareerTech students earned 19,566 industry-endorsed certificates, showing that they have the skills Oklahoma’s industries need.

In Oklahoma’s comprehensive school districts, 35 percent of sixth through 12th grade students — and almost half of ninth through 12th grade students — enrolled in CareerTech courses: agricultural education; business and information technology education; family and consumer sciences education; health careers education; marketing education; science, technology, engineering and mathematics; and trade and industrial education.

More than 82,000 students also learned leadership skills as members of co-curricular CareerTech student organizations: FFA; Family, Careers and Community Leaders of America; SkillsUSA; Technology Student Association; Business Professionals of America; HOSA; and DECA.

In addition, 3,356 CareerTech students in comprehensive schools and technology centers were honored for their work be achieving membership in the National Technical Honor Society.

In 2019, CareerTech also expanded OK Career Guide, its statewide career development education system, to include Galaxy, which introduces career awareness to pre-K through fifth grade students.

Oklahoma CareerTech helps provide qualified employees for the state’s businesses and industries by preparing state residents for successful careers, but it also provides direct services business and industry.

CareerTech’s Business and Industry Services Division helped more than 8,000 companies increase their profitability in FY19 with increased sales, higher productivity, reduced costs and expanded operations and helped companies move to and start in Oklahoma and provided training for 2,527 new jobs. Also, the Oklahoma Bid Assistance Network helped state companies secure more than $550 million in contracts.

CareerTech also has a presence in state correctional facilities through a partnership with the Oklahoma Department of Corrections. Instructors in the Skills Centers School System teach inmates and juvenile offenders work and life skills that help keep them in the workforce and out of the corrections system after their release. In FY19, more than 2,000 people were enrolled in skills centers, and positive placement — employment, continuing education or military — was 89.21 percent.

The CareerTech System also helps those who dropped out of high school earn diplomas and gain skills to enter the workforce through the dropout recovery program. In FY19, 367 people earned a high school diploma through the program.

ODCTE also oversees Oklahoma’s adult basic education program, which includes 32 providers offering high school equivalency programs and tests along with English literacy and civics courses at 111 sites. In FY19, 12,647 students enrolled in CareerTech’s adult basic education programs.

The Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education provides leadership and resources and assures standards of excellence for a comprehensive statewide system of career and technology education. The system offers programs and services in 29 technology center districts operating on 58 campuses, 394 comprehensive school districts, 16 skills centers campuses that include three juvenile facilities and 32 adult basic education service providers.

The agency is governed by the State Board of Career and Technology Education and works closely with the State Department of Education and the State Regents for Higher Education to provide a seamless educational system for all Oklahomans.

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