This month, the Florida Department of Education, students and educators are celebrating Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month with the 2018 theme, “Celebrate Today and Own Tomorrow.”
“We are proud to offer Floridians a public education system that was designed to help students of all ages and backgrounds reach their academic and career goals,” said Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart. “Many students have gained the professional skills necessary to succeed through the Career and Technical Education programs available in all of our state’s school districts and colleges. Career and Technical Education Month is a great time to highlight the tremendous opportunities available to help students get a head-start on their careers.”
More than half a million Florida students are enrolled in secondary and postsecondary career and technical education. Programs around the state will hold activities during February to promote awareness about these educational opportunities.
“CTE programs have evolved from the ‘vocational’ programs of the past that prepared students for a single job with limited skills to today’s programs where students are prepared for a career,” said Career and Adult Education Chancellor Rod Duckworth. “Students who are enrolled in Florida’s CTE courses and programs are developing the skills to be successful in today’s workplace and those necessary for the jobs of the future.”
In honor of CTE Month, the department recognized two students who are benefiting greatly from CTE programs.
Kaitlyn Bowman is a high school junior in the engineering magnet program at Lyman High School in Seminole County. She has been studying engineering since middle school and plans to continue after graduation. Through this program, Kaitlyn has taken coursework in engineering, digital electronics and robotics and participated in SkillsUSA, which enables CTE students to strengthen their leadership skills and compete in their chosen field. Following graduation, Kaitlyn will work toward a degree in mechanical engineering.
Nicolas Velasco graduated in 2017 from Atlantic Technical High School in Broward County, where he studied machining to build the foundation he will need to pursue a degree in mechanical and aeronautical engineering. He was selected for the prestigious Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Vocational Scholarship Program, and he is currently representing Florida in Germany, where he has begun a series of CTE internships.
Students and educators continue to experience the positive impacts associated with Career and Technical Education and Industry Certifications, as evidenced by the data points below.
- More than 420,000 K-12 students are enrolled in career and technical education programs in Florida’s public schools.
- More than 52,000 students are enrolled in district technical center programs that prepare students for immediate entry into high demand, high skill employment opportunities.
- More than 164,000 students are enrolled in the Florida College System postsecondary career and technical education programs.
- The number of industry certifications earned by K-12 students continues to rise. In 2015-16, high school students earned a total of 81,970 industry certifications, and in 2016-17, that number jumped to 102,044.
- More than 489,000 students in grades 6-12 are enrolled in one of over 1,900 registered Career and Professional Education Academies and more than 17,000 registered Career-Themed Courses.
To learn more about Career and Technical Education in Florida, visithttp://fldoe.org/academics/career-adult-edu/career-tech-edu.