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Archive for January, 2013

An FCCLA Chapter of Service and Leadership

Monday, January 28th, 2013

By Eric Wilcox
Utah FCCLA State President

The student body of Westlake High School was recently shocked by the tragic traffic-related accident involving an alumni student, placing her in intensive care for nearly a month. The surrounding community of Saratoga Springs acted to serve her devastated family. Informed that this student was a former FCCLA member, as well as learning of our chapter adviser’s recent traffic accident, members were encouraged to create a service project which could peer educate Westlake students, their families, and the community on traffic safety knowledge.

A strong committee of Utah FCCLA members formed the “Gift of Life” Family Traffic Safety Fair, informing our community that lives saved from obeying traffic safety is the “ultimate gift.” The event focused on one of FCCLA’s 11 National Programs, FACTS: Families Acting for Community Traffic Safety. Through FACTS, FCCLA members can strive to save lives by educating both youth and adults on traffic safety.

Members contacted many safety-related organizations, such as Zero Fatalities, National Organizations for Youth Safety (NOYS), Utah Organ Donors, Utah County Health Department, Saratoga Springs Police Department, Alpine School District Transportation, and more. An FCCLA member would accompany this organization to present on various safety aspects, or created a unique booth complete with research, statistics, and activities. The Safety Fair could appeal to every family, where car seat safety, teen alcohol prevention, and adult safe driving practices could all be taught.

The Hank’s family at the Safety Fair

Each classroom within Westlake High School was encouraged to participate in the “Gift of Life” service event by creating a gift basket in honor of a local or personal traffic accident victim. These were displayed at the Family Traffic Safety Fair and sold through a silent auction. In connection with this event, Westlake FCCLA held an annual community holiday fundraiser based off the novel The Christmas Jars by Jason F. Wright. The Christmas Jars service event, created by FCCLA, has grown to become Westlake High’s main holiday project.

Through fundraising, Wright was able to fly from Virginia to Saratoga Springs, UT to give a presentation on service and give a special invitation to Westlake High students to attend the “Gift of Life” Safety Fair on December 3, 2012. Evaluation was recorded from each attendee through a prize drawing/feedback sheet, which asked how each attendee could now improve their family and community’s safety.

Jason Wright and Eric Wilcox

In a brand new school, it’s been fantastic to see how our FCCLA chapter has developed extensive service projects which will grow into community traditions. The school and community of Westlake High are continually impressed by the great leadership FCCLA members display.

What is your CTE Moment?

Monday, January 28th, 2013

Help your school shine during CTE Month by emailing us (Utah CTE) a photo that illustrates a “CTE Moment” at your school! Whether you capture a moment in Agriculture or Technology & Engineering – or any Area of Study in between – we would really like to share your CTE classrooms and successes with as many people as possible using our social media.

Here are the steps:

  1. Take a photo of a CTE Moment at your school, and —
    > try to include a little hint within the photo to let people know which school you’re representing.
    > if your image includes people (not just objects), have them complete a media release.
  2. Send your photo and media release(s) via email to UtahCTE@schools.utah.gov no later than Friday, February 8.
  3. A single photo will be drawn for posting on our UtahCTE Facebook page each of three Mondays – February 11, 18, and 25.
  4. We  will tweet the link to the photos selected (three times during the week that it’s posted) and ask UtahCTE followers to “like” and “re-tweet.”
  5. The photo that achieves the highest reach (i.e., most “likes” on Facebook + most “re-tweets” during the week posted) will receive an assortment of gift cards worth $50 (the use of which will be determined by the associated CTE Director or designee).
  6. All eligible and appropriate images will be compiled into a slide show and shared via the UtahCTE YouTube channel.

The CTE Moment contest is explicitly for Utah CTE students and staff in Utah secondary and postsecondary schools. Other entries will not be accepted.

Take a look at past CTE Moments!

2012 CTE Moments













2011 CTE Moments

National Youth Safety Video Contest

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013

On June 26, 2013, the winners of the 2013 National Youth Safety Video Contest were announced at the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference in Kansas City, Missouri. Congratulations to the winners!

First Place: Clarke County High School in Berryville, Virginia
Watch video

Second Place: Berks Career and Technology Center  in St. Oley, Pennsylvania
Watch video

Third Place: Passaic County Technical Institute in Wayne, New Jersey
Watch video

CareerSafe will announce submission information for the 2014 National Youth Safety Video Contest within the next few months. Stay tuned!


How does winning a $2,500 scholarship sound? What about winning $5,000 for your school classroom? It’s possible and all you need to do is to create a video highlighting the importance of youth safety in the workplace. “This is an opportunity for students to tap into their creativity to make a fun, dynamic, and most importantly, educational video that demonstrates safety in the workplace,” says Katie George, Deputy Program Manager of CareerSafe®, sponsor of the video contest.

Who: All Career and Technical Education (CTE) students in middle/junior high and high school.
What: National Youth Safety Video Contest.
Where: Winners will be announced June 26, 2013 at the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference in Kansas City, Missouri.
When: Videos must be submitted and postmarked by Friday, March 1, 2013.
How: Work independently or as a team. (A team may be comprised of one to five members.)

Submission rules
> Video must be created by the entrant.
> Video must convey a message related to youth safety in the workplace.
> Videos may not have been previously submitted, distributed, aired, or have won any other award in any other competition.
> Upload video to YouTube and submit URL with entry form.
> Click HERE for submission package information and details.

> Must be a CTE student and a legal resident of the United States, age 13 years or older.
> Each entry must have a sponsor (e.g. teacher, mentor, advisor, or parent/guardian.)
> Limit one entry per team. (A team may be comprised of one to five members.)
> Read contest rules.

First Place:
$2,500 scholarship and $5,000 cash prize
Second Place:
$2,000 scholarship and $3,500 cash prize
Third Place:
$1,500 scholarship and $2,000 cash prize

For more information email the CareerSafe® contest team at contest@careersafeonline.com.

Good luck!

It’s coming. . .TSA State Conference

Thursday, January 10th, 2013

In Utah, over 1,800 middle/junior high and high school students aspire to be future engineers, scientists and technologists through the Technology Student Association (TSA). Right now, TSA students across the state are preparing for the upcoming TSA State Conference that will be held March 19-20, 2013. Middle/junior high school students will compete in events ranging from digital photography to electrical applications to global manufacturing to VEX robotics competitions. High school students will compete in events ranging from engineering design to scientific and technical visualization to structural engineering to VEX robotics competitions.

Who: Middle/junior high and high school students
What: TSA State Conference
Where: Jordan Applied Technology Center
When: March 19-20, 2013
Middle school competitive events held on March 19, 2013
High school competitive events held on March-20, 2013
How: To compete in a competition, register online beginning Friday, February 1, 2013. Registration closes Monday, March 11. 2013. (All affiliated chapters will be issued a state user name and password in order to register.)
Cost: The conference is $20.00 for students, advisors, and guests.

Only TSA chapters who have completed their membership registration with National TSA will be able to participate at the State Conference. If your chapter has not affiliated with the National TSA office, you are encouraged to do so as soon as possible.

Utah TSA members represent students with many interests and talents. The scope of technology continues to expand and as a result the TSA competitive events are wide ranging. There is not an employer today that does not seek the most technologically literate employees who have the leadership and organizational skills of a TSA member.

TSA fosters personal growth, leadership, and opportunities in technology, innovation, design, and engineering. Members apply and integrate science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) concepts through co-curricular activities, competitions and related programs.

If you are not a member of TSA and would like to become a member, talk to your school counselor to get connected with the TSA advisor in your school.

FFA Chapter Video Contest

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

By the Utah FFA State Officers

It’s time to get your creative juices flowing and live out your dreams to be a movie director, star, editor, and creator. The Utah FFA State Officer Team has a challenge for you….. Make your own video and share your chapter stories and experiences in agriculture. The best videos will be shown at the State FFA Convention, March 14-16, and be voted on by those attending.

Check out the State Officer’s sample video. This video shows short examples of all three topics. Use your own creativity, it doesn’t have to be a music video this is just an example.


FFA Chapter Video Contest Rules
Submission Due by February 20, 2013

1. Your video must address one of the following three topics:

A. Tell Your Story: Introduce FFA and Your Chapter. Tell us what your FFA chapter does, what’s interesting, why should someone be an FFA member, and what does FFA have to offer?

B. Why is Agriculture Important? Show the audience why they need agriculture and why it’s importance to us all.

C. Introduce Agriculture and Agricultural Careers in Your Area. Show the audience agriculture and agricultural careers in your hometown and surrounding area. Introduce them to the diversity, opportunity and excitement.

2. Video may be a maximum of 5 minutes.

3. To submit your video upload it to youtube.com, by February 20, 2013, available for all to see. Once the video is uploaded, email the name of the video and the YouTube link to brettevans@utffa.org. You’re also encouraged, but not required, to post a link to your video on the Utah FFA Facebook page.

4. Do not break any copyright laws! Be careful about the images, music, and clips you use.

5. Contest winner will be determined by popular vote.

6. All persons whose name or image appear in the video, including the person who uploads the video to the Utah FFA Facebook page, gives express permission for their image and persona to be used by the Utah FFA Association for the purpose of this contest and promotion of FFA and agriculture.

7. The Utah FFA Association State Executive Committee, at their sole discretion, reserves the right to disqualify any video deemed vulgar, demeaning or inappropriate.

If you have questions please contact Mr. Evans, the Utah FFA Executive Secretary, at brettevans@utffa.org.

What will the year 2013 bring?

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

By Gary Wixom
Assistant Commissioner for Career and Technical Education
Utah System of Higher Education

What will the year 2013 bring? If you search the Internet you find predictions for the New Year in almost any area you are interested in exploring. Predictions for what will happen to the economy, predictions for what will happen in politics, predictions for what will happen in education, predictions for the latest in technology, and you can even read about predictions on what the predictions will be! We often use the start of the calendar year as a time to do a little predicting of our own future and make resolutions about how to be “better”, to be “richer”, or to be “smarter.” Then, as the months slip away, we often settle in to what is comfortable and make little change in our lives.

A good way to start off the year 2013 is to make a goal to learn something new every day. After all, we are learning creatures—we come into the world needing to learn everything, and we spend the first years of our life focused on learning, so making a lifelong practice of learning is what makes humans unique. Today, learning is easier than ever before. We are confronted with loads of information on a daily basis. Information on any subject is just a click away on the Internet. What we do with that information is the key. Let’s make the year 2013 a year of learning no matter what station of life you find yourself in.

Did you know that nearly 30,000 high school students not only are learning in high school, but at the same time they are earning college credit through the concurrent enrollment program? Last year students earned over 194,000 college credits while still in high school and got a head start on their college/career pathway.

Research is showing that students who participate in concurrent enrollment courses improve their chances for success. Career and Technical Education (CTE) is a great place to begin a concurrent enrollment experience. Students who participate in CTE concurrent enrollment courses reduce the likelihood of dropping out of high school, they generally obtain more academic and technical skill than other students, transition to postsecondary training at a higher rate, and have a greater opportunity to obtain employment leading to a livable wage.

There will be many opportunities to “learn” during 2013. If you are still in high school, look into the many career pathways that are open to you, and take advantage of the concurrent enrollment program. If you have moved beyond high school, choose a career pathway that will lead to good employment and personal fulfillment. In the year 2013, let’s make it a year that we learn something new every day.

Lesser Known Occupations in Healthcare

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

Healthcare offers some of the best opportunities in the economy, but includes workers in many occupations besides the familiar doctors, nurses and CNAs. Healthcare occupations require varying levels of education/training. Some workers are directly involved with patients, and others work behind the scenes. There are some workers in healthcare facilities that aren’t specifically classified as healthcare workers – e.g., Hospital Receptionist, Janitors, Food Service Managers – but employment in this industry often translates into better wages even for workers in these occupations.

The table below reflects some lesser known occupations in healthcare. For more detailed information about these occupations, and others in which you may be interested, visit UtahFutures. Completing related Health Science Career Pathways is a good way to explore these occupations or to prepare for further study in college.


Interest Code*

U S Employment






Nat’l Annual Median Wage (2011)


Endoscopy Technician


202,000 65,800



1-2 years college



169,000 52,100




Nuclear Equipment Operation Technician


7,000 33,400



Some college

diagnostic Technologist


94,000 40,400

Faster than average



Opthalmic Medical Technologist


94,000 40,400

Faster than average


1-2 years college

Surgical Technologist


94,000 33,900



1-2 years college

*For descriptions of the interest codes included here – consistent with Holland Codes and Utah Career Fields – visit O*NET Online.
Sources: U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (national), Utah Department of Workforce Services (state)