In that spirit, Science Hill High School’s College, Career and Technical Education program held an open house on Tuesday to show prospective students and parents what current students have been working on in their classes.
Director Julia Decker said technical classes such as the ones offered by the CCTE program are essential for giving students real world experience, and getting that experience as early as possible is crucial.
“No student should leave high school without knowing what they want to do. Take it in high school and see if that’s what you like,” she said.
Carrie Townes, a senior in the culinary arts program, said she is already starting to look at different culinary schools. She, like many other students in the CCTE program, has used the program to hone in on her niche.
“I’ve been wanting to do it for a while, since elementary school,” Townes said. “I definitely want to pursue it.”
Courses offered by the program include agriculture, architecture and engineering design, automotive technology, business management and administration, construction technology, cosmetology, criminal justice, digital arts and design, social health services, medical technologies and welding.
Decker said she’s noticed a lot of growth since taking over the program in 2010.
“We started a new program — pharmaceutical tech this year — and we started dentistry last year,” Decker said. “Programs are put in place based on the needs of your community. For instance, the medical field is a big force in our community. We actually have five teachers in our three health science courses, which is our biggest program.”
Though many of the courses are technical, Decker said the goals of the courses are not only designed to encourage hands-on, real world application, they’re also aligned with state academic standards.
For parents curious about the career and technical programs offered at Science Hill, Decker said events such as Tuesday’s open house often serve as a way to show off what skills students have been learning.
“Today was just to invite the community to show them what we have to offer and see how we are preparing students for the real world,” Decker said. “See what classes our students are taking to go to that next level.”