Career and Technical Education Is a Lot More Than Your Grandad’s Vo-Tech

There’s a lot of stigma that comes with Career and Technical Education (CTE). Despite it being a more affordable, lucrative, and rewarding option for Americans, it still has a “less-than” kind of reputation when compared to higher education.

CTE is a lot more than your grandad’s vo-tech. It’s a rigorous option for all students seeking to explore career and life opportunities. I am living proof. I am a graduate of all three levels of public education: K12, CareerTech, & Higher Ed and by far, CareerTech was the most rewarding (and affordable).

My Traditional High School Experience

As a freshman and sophomore in high school, I was an introverted “wallflower” that disliked traditional high school academia and the social expectations that came with it like prom, homecoming, sports, etc. I excelled academically, but I never felt a sense of belonging in the traditional high school setting. In fact, I hated it.

CTE: A Place for Me

Because of my aversion to the traditional high school setting, I applied for and was accepted into the Web Design program at Moore Norman Technology Center, my local CareerTech center. This arrangement allowed me to complete my required core courses at the high school and attend MNTC’s Web Design Program as elective credit during my junior and senior year. A half day at the high school, a half day at the tech center. I LOVED IT.

MNTC’s Web Design program (one of over 30 programs to choose from at MNTC) enabled me to think creatively, work with like-minded peers, and learn and practice much-needed soft skills. I graduated MNTC job-ready and with skills I was able to use immediately.

CTE Leads to Advanced Degrees & Certifications, Too.

After graduating from MNTC in 2004, I earned my undergraduate degree from The University of Oklahoma. Undoubtedly, the skills I acquired in my CTE high school program made my journey through undergraduate college much easier.

In the summer of 2014 I brought my career full circle. I applied and accepted a marketing position at the same CareerTech center I attended in high school: MNTC. 

Additionally:

  • In 2017, with the help of MNTC’s tuition enhancement program, I completed my Master’s Degree in Public Administration from The University of Central Oklahoma. 
  • In 2018, I earned my Accreditation in Public Relations (APR).
  • In 2020, I founded The School of Swag part-time blog and freelance business!

Advancing CareerTech Education Through Communication

I am honored to spend much of my day in school PR, marketing, & communications advocating for CTE and helping change the lives of public school students who need it most.

If you want to learn more about CTE and how you can advocate for it, please contact me.

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