Students and faculty in career and technical education programs across the nation celebrated National Career and Technical Education Month during February.
Career and Technical Education Month was established by the Association for Career and Technical Education to raise student, parent and educator awareness of the profound economic and technological changes in our society that are reflected in today’s workplace.
The theme of the 2010 celebration, “Career and Technical Education: Invest in your Future,” emphasized the role career and technical education plays in giving students the necessary technical skills for successful careers in a modern job market. This theme encourages students of all ages to look at career and technical education as an investment in a successful career path.
As a part of the month-long celebration, the Career Center opened its doors to parents, family members, and special guests as they hosted the annual Parents Lunch.
Student Advisory Council members decorated the cafeteria, horticulture students filled brightly colored balloons with helium and the culinary students prepared a delicious meal for the special guests. Everyone took their place, lifted the warming lids and the parents arrived!
Lunch was exuberant and the energy was high. Parents were proud of the accomplishments of their children and shared the benefits of Career and Technical Education. Junior Medical Information Tech student Lindsey Shelton was enjoying lunch with her mother Robin. Mrs. Shelton was impressed with the changes in her daughter's self-confidence since entering a career and technical education program.
"Lindsey has high self esteem and does not want to miss school. She is thinking about her future and has higher expectations," she said.
Moving down the table, Marlanna Tackett was dining with her parents. Marlanna is currently studying Automotive Service Technology and is the only girl in her class. Her mother Cynthia Tackett said it has been a great experience for her daughter.
"She is much more interested in her education and enjoys her classes and her grades are better and I like that! Marlanna likes it at Grant because she says she is treated like an adult."
An entire family of Grant graduates were sharing the lunch experience with their son, Cody. Jody and Kevin Weidemann graduated in 1986 and are happy with the changes they have seen in their son since he enrolled in the Automotive Service Technology program, also the program that Kevin studied while at Grant.
Jody, an Office Information Processing graduate said, "Cody's grades have improved, and he is more motivated to get a job. I see more maturity in his behavior."
The lunch bells rang and the juniors returned to class. A new wave of parents arrived to have lunch with their senior students. Cheryl Brown and her son, Engineering Design student, Matt Brown took a break from their lunch to share their thoughts on how career and technical education has impacted their lives.
"Matt is much happier doing things that he is interested in," said Cheryl. "He has focused on his career and has a better idea of what he wants to study in college."
Jenny Hoskins is a senior in Medical Information Tech and is preparing to enter the workforce upon graduation. Her mom, Christine Howard, said everything Jenny has learned has been a benefit.
Every student has a special story to tell on how career and technical education has been an investment in their future.
If you have a high school student who can benefit from the career and technical education experience, investigate career options on our website at www.grantcareer.com or call the Career Center at (513) 734-6222.