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National Association of State Directors of Career
Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc)

Register Today for Upcoming Webinars

February 2nd, 2015

There’s still time to register for NASDCTEc’s upcoming webinars!

2014 State CTE Policy Reviewspr
February 5, 2015, 3 – 4 p.m. ET
States are increasingly looking to CTE as a means to help close the skills gap and boost the number of people with a postsecondary credential. Join us as we step through the major state policy trends affecting CTE from 2014 including new laws, executive actions and regulatory activity. This webinar will coincide with the release of the second annual “2014 State CTE Policy Review,” a joint publication from ACTE and NASDCTEc.

Speakers:

  • Catherine Imperatore, Research Manager, Association for Career and Technical Education
  • Andrea Zimmermann, State Policy Associate, National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium

Register Today

Employer Engagement: State PerspectivesUntitled
February 10, 2015, 2 – 3 p.m. ET
Join us for an in-depth discussion as we take a closer look at how Alabama and Kansas, in concert with their employer partners, work together to inform, align and enhance their CTE systems at the secondary and postsecondary levels. This webinar is the second in a series on employer engagement. To learn more about employer engagement in CTE, check out our newest report!

Speakers:

  • Dr. Philip C. Cleveland, Alabama State Director of CTE and Workforce Development
  • George Clark, President, Manufacture Alabama and Chair of the Alabama Workforce Investment Board
  • Dr. Blake Flanders, Vice President of Workforce Development, Kansas Board of Regents
  • Keven Ward, Public Sector Consultant, Trane

Register Today

This Week in CTE

January 30th, 2015

TWEET OF THE WEEK blog-thumbnail-thiswek
@CCRSCenter Join us Feb. 12 for our #CTEMonth #CCRSchat with @CTEWorks, we’ll be asking them questions about #CTE and #careerreadiness.
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ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
How Tech Ed Has Transformed with the Times
In Vermont, 16 regional career and technical education centers provide stellar CTE to students, with a focus on employer partnerships in terms of internships and apprenticeships, as well as aligning courses with industry-recognized credentials. “I have half academic classes, so half high school classes, then I have three hours a day here. It’s really nice to have that split up, so you have the best of both worlds. I have my math classes at school and I have all the creative learning here with the designing,” said Jake Maurer, Essex High School junior.
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VIDEO OF THE WEEK
Connecting the Classroom to Promising Health Careers
This PBS special dives into Oakland’s Life Academy highly successful academic and work-based learning approach, making it clear to students what opportunities awaits them in the healthcare field.
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RESOURCE OF THE WEEK
Registered Apprenticeship College Consortium (RACC)
The RACC is a network of colleges and apprenticeship programs, created by the US Department of Labor, dedicated to ensuring students are provided with opportunities to move from college to career.
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ANNOUNCEMENT OF THE WEEK
CTE Month kicks off February! Keep an eye out for Twitter chats, articles, videos, onsite events and more. If you’re doing anything for CTE Month, let us know by emailing [email protected]

Katie Fitzgerald, Communications Associate

Legislative Update: President Obama Delivers State of the Union Address

January 21st, 2015

CapitolLast night President Obama delivered his penultimate State of the Union (SOTU) address to Congress. In his remarks, the President laid out an ambitious agenda for the remainder of his term which he dubbed “middle-class economics”— a series of domestic policy proposals the administration will seek to implement over the next two years to support a stronger middle class.

Touching on issues ranging from immigration, tax reform, infrastructure investment, foreign policy and energy, the President touted recent positive trends in the economy declaring that “our economy is growing and creating jobs at the fastest pace since 1999.”

Although the speech did not touch on education and workforce development issues as much as his past addresses have, the President did devote significant attention to the Administration’s broader skills agenda. As expected, the Administration’s recently announced America’s College Promise proposal was a central feature in last night’s remarks. “By the end of this decade, two in three job openings will require some higher education” said the President before emphasizing that “this plan is your chance to graduate ready for the new economy, without a load of debt. That’s why I am sending this Congress a bold new plan to lower the cost of community college – to zero.”

President Obama also referenced Vice President Joe Biden’s ongoing Job-Driven Training efforts, an announcement that was made during last year’s State of the Union address. He went on to highlight the importance of employers partnering with the education system to “train workers to fill high-paying jobs like coding, and nursing, and robotics” before going on to call for more companies like CVS and UPS to offer apprenticeships and other work-based learning opportunities.

Although Career Technical Education (CTE) was not directly mentioned during last night’s State of the Union, CTE still had a significant presence in the Congressional chamber where the President delivered his remarks. Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) brought Lisa Barnett, a CTE coordinator for Botetourt County public school system, as his guest for the annual convening in the Capitol. First Lady Michelle Obama also brought Katrice Mubiru, a CTE instructor for the Los Angeles unified school district, as a guest last night. Two other postsecondary CTE students were also in attendance from Tennessee and North Carolina respectively.

Steve Voytek, Government Relations Manager 

This Week in CTE

January 9th, 2015

TWEET OF THE WEEKblog-thumbnail-thiswek
@WhiteHouse “In America, a quality education cannot be a privilege that is reserved for a few” —Obama: http://go.wh.gov/comm-college #FreeCommunityCollege
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TOOL OF THE WEEK 
Colorado Advanced Manufacturing Career Action Tool
This website provides visual pathways a user can take to determine the skills, education and training jobs require in manufacturing. Using this tool you’ll find complete information for each job type, including a video showcasing what the job looks like, what responsibilities the job entails, hot to get into the profession and what license or certificate may be required.
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ARTICLE OF THE WEEK 
Obama Proposes Publicly Funded Community College for All
President Obama announced today a proposal to provide students with two years of free community college, a program modeled after the highly successful Tennessee Promise, which provides free community and technical education tuition. “Community college should be free for those willing to work for it because, in America, a quality education should not be a privilege that is reserved for a few,” said Obama.
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RESOURCE OF THE WEEK
Success in Real-Time: Using Real-Time Labor Market Information to Build Better Middle-Skills STEM Pathways
This brief encourages states to support their colleges as they use high-quality, real-time labor market information to align the creation of middle-skill STEM pathways with robust career opportunities, and provides recommendations and examples for how states can do so.
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PARTNER UPDATE OF THE WEEK 
We are very excited to announce that the National Career Clusters® Institute is merging with CareerTech VISION, hosted by the Association for Career and Technical Educators (ACTE). We hope to see you in New Orleans November 19-22.
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Katie Fitzgerald, Communications Associate 

Happy Holidays from NASDCTEc!

December 24th, 2014

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All of us at the National Association of State Directors of Career Technical Education Consortium wish you a happy and safe holiday season! We thank you for your continued support and advocacy for Career Technical Education in your communities, helping to create opportunities for a better future for all CTE students.

Katie Fitzgerald, Communications Associate 

This Week in CTE

December 5th, 2014

TWEET OF THE WEEK blog-thumbnail-thiswek
Vice President Biden @VP “My wife has an expression, she says community colleges are the best kept secret in America.” — VP Biden at #CollegeOpportunity summit

RESEARCH REPORT OF THE WEEK
The State of Employer Engagement in CTE
We released a new report exploring how employers are partnering with the Career Technical Education (CTE) enterprise to help prepare students for success in careers. The report drew from a survey of 47 State CTE Directors as well as a dozen interviews to understand how and in what ways employers were engaging with CTE across the country and to illuminate the state’s role in fostering employer engagement.
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RESOURCE OF THE WEEK
Complete College America Launches Powerful New Data Portal
Click your state to see a snapshot of its progress and student success data in college completion. Then visit in the coming months to see a comprehensive, up-to-date collection of state and campus-level data.
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ARTICLE OF THE WEEK
Importing the German Approach to Career Building
Amy Liu, Co-Director and Senior Fellow at Metropolitan Policy Program discusses her recent trip to Germany and how their dual learning program combines academic and work-based skills. “Rather than limit teenagers’ life choices, the system provides young people with opportunities to attain a college degree or management training alongside paid, practical work experience,” said Liu.
More

Katie Fitzgerald, Communications Associate 

CTE & Upward Mobility

December 4th, 2014

Earlier this week, the Thomas B. Fordham Institute hosted a day-long conference on “Education for Upward Mobility.” Over the course of the day, researchers, writers and thought leaders shared reflections on how education can move students out of poverty – and how lack of a quality education essentially shuts the door on economic success.

What was perhaps most remarkable is that no matter what topic each presenter and panel covered was that the conversation kept coming back to the role of Career Technical Education (CTE) in breaking the intergenerational cycle of poverty. Tamar Jacoby from Opportunity America, Bob Lerman from the Urban Institute, and Bob Schwartz from Harvard University were on hand to talk about industry credentials and certifications, apprenticeships and Pathways to Prosperity, respectively, but many of their peers also championed CTE, work-based learning, career academies and related efforts.

We encourage you to check out all of the associated papers here, watch the panels here and scroll through very lively Twitter feed here.

Kate Blosveren, Associate Executive Director

Upcoming Webinar: The State of Employer Engagement in CTE

November 4th, 2014

From its earliest roots, employer engagement has been a part of CTE’s legacy. Yet little is known about what is really happening consistently and systematically across the country, and what state leaders can do to accelerate effective engagement.

Over the summer, NASDCTEc conducted a survey of the State CTE Directors to better understand how and in what ways employers are engaging in CTE today. To review the results of the survey as outlined in the report, The State of Career Technical Education: Employer Engagement in CTE, NASDCTEc will host a free webinar on December 3, 2014 from 2:00 – 3:00 PM ET.  The webinar will unpack the survey’s results and seek to illustrate the employer engagement landscape with a particular focus on the ways in which states are and can foster and sustain meaningful employer engagement to strengthen their CTE system for all students.

Register for free

Katie Fitzgerald, Communications Associate 

Council of State Governments’ National Conference

August 15th, 2014

Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to attend The Council of State Governments’ (CSG)  annual national conference as a member of the National Task Force on Workforce Development and Education, which is part of their “State Pathways to Prosperity initiative.”  With members representing all three branches of state government, CSG brought a broad set of perspectives together to discuss the key challenges and opportunities in developing a strong education and workforce pipeline.  The final Task Force framework and recommendations will be further developed and released in the coming months.

In addition to the Task Force meeting, I also had the opportunity to attend a policy academy where I learned about an array of  impressive state- and business-led efforts to support students’ career readiness and U.S. competitiveness. One such example is the MC2 STEM High School, developed through a partnership between the Cleveland Metropolitan School District and GE Lighting.  Students attend school on the GE campus during their sophomore year, where they engage in a year-long project that culminates in a presentation to GE leaders, and then spend their junior and senior years at Cleveland State University. All students complete at least one internship, have a GE “buddy” and must demonstrate 90 percent “proficiency” to earn credits. Since the school opened in 2008, nearly 100 percent of MC2 STEM students have graduated, and 84 percent of the graduates have matriculated into college.

Another fascinating model shared was the Automotive Manufacturers Technical Education Collaborative (AMTEC), or the National Center for Excellence in Advanced Automotive Manufacturing. AMTEC is an effort supported by the major automotive manufacturers – Ford, GM, Toyota, Honda, etc. – to develop a set of common expectations to anchor training programs for multi-skilled employees. AMTEC provides industry-developed and verified curriculum and assessments to its member community colleges, companies and high schools, as well as professional development and other resources.

Alaska 1And did I mention the meeting was in Anchorage, Alaska as a bonus? As evidence, here’s a picture of me…and a picture of a moose. 

Alaska 2

 
Kate Blosveren, Associate Executive Director

 

Georgia Program Highlighted for Learning that Works — through Work

August 14th, 2014

“The idea is to bring abstract concepts to life to make them easier to understand.”

Those words are the crux of a recent 1,000 word profile of a school-industry partnership between Southwire, a Georgia-based manufacturer and its local school district called 12 for Life that is designed to tie education — particularly in math and science — to career skills.

In the report, the Wall Street Journal’s Jonathan House documents collaboration between company executives who were “increasingly alarmed by their difficulty finding reliable employees, a problem they attributed at least in part to an elevated high-school dropout rate” and school officials to build a program that ties four hours working with experienced professionals on Southwire’s factory floor to eight hours of classroom learning in an innovative summer school experience.

Though restricted to the Manufacturing Career Cluster, the Southwire partnership is a model for positive employer engagement. It embodies principle two of Reflect, Transform, Lead: A New Vision for Career Technical Education, asan active partnership between employers and educators that delivers a dynamic experience to local high schoolers, and has already demonstrated a positive return on investment (principle five) for the company.

Against the backdrop of Georgia’s new bill expanding youth apprenticeship programs to increase work-based learning opportunities, Southwire provides a clear example of Learning that works for Georgia.

Learn more about the program here.

Evan Williamson, Communications Associate

FOLLOW UP: Forbes also profiled Southwire’s 12 for Life initiative in their August 18 edition. That story is available here.

 

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