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Archive for February, 2014

CTSO Spring Leadership Conferences

Friday, February 28th, 2014

This month Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO) student members gather together to compete in numerous skills events at CTSO spring conferences. The winners in each event will advance to the CTSO national competition.

March 5-7:
FBLA Spring Leadership Conference
Davis Conference Center – Layton, UT

March 11-12:
TSA State Conference
Jordan Applied Technology Center – West Jordan, UT

March 13-15:
FFA State Convention
Utah State University – Logan, UT

March 21-22:
HOSA State Leadership Conference
Davis Conference Center – Layton, UT

March 26-27:
FCCLA State Convention
Davis Conference Center – Layton, UT

March 27-28:
SkillsUSA State Leadership and Skills Conference
Davis Conference Center – Layton, UT

CTSO members, what organization do you belong to?
 DECA – An Association of Marketing Students
> FBLA – Future Business Leaders of America
> FCCLA – Family, Career and Community Leaders of America
> FFA – An Association of Agricultural Education Students
> HOSA – Health Occupations Students of America
> Skills USA – An Association of Skilled & Technical Sciences Education Students
> TSA – Technology Student Association

We want to hear about your conference and what skills event you competed in. Send your stories and photos to UtahCTE@schools.utah.gov and we will share them with our online communities—Twitter, Facebook, and via the Utah CTE blog and the CTE Directions newsletter.

Students who participate in a CTSO demonstrate higher levels of academic engagement and motivation, civic engagement, career self-efficacy and employability skills than other students. If you are not a member of a CTSO, and would like to become a member, talk to your school counselor to get connected with the CTSO advisor in your school.


Kaitlin Hallam: Welding Her Way to Success

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

By Shaun Black, CTE welding instructor at Spanish Fork High School

In the welding classes I teach at Spanish Fork High School there are multiple opportunities to be proud as an educator. As, student and FFA member, Kaitlin Hallam progressed through the class welding and cutting assignments she realized that she wanted a challenge. She approached me with the idea to make a trailer. With her motivation and enthusiasm for the welding course I assured her it would be achievable and that is exactly what she did. Kaitlin’s trailer ended up being an 18’, dual 7500 lb. axle, flatbed utility trailer. From the design to the last coat of paint she did an excellent job! The trailer was a very sound and professional grade build. This trailer was beyond any high school level project. Kaitlin entered the trailer into several competitions and was well deserving of the awards that followed. She took 1st place at the Utah Valley University Welding Expo, 1st place in the Senior Division at the Utah County Fair, and was the winner of the Ag Mechanics exhibit at the Utah State Fair.

On February 12, 2014, Kaitlin was recognized by the Nebo School District Board for her accomplishments. At the meeting a representative from Lincoln Electric awarded Kaitlin a prize package valued over $500 that included a set of Lincoln tools, an auto darkening helmet, leather gloves, and a leather welding jacket and cap.

Left to right: Shaun Black, CTE welding instructor at Spanish Fork High School;
Kaitlin Hallam; Jason Hart, representative Lincoln Electric Company;
John DeGraffenried, Secondary Education Director at Nebo School District

It was my privilege to accompany Kaitlin to the Board meeting and at the same time promote the welding program in Nebo School District. Kaitlin is welding her way to success and is definitely college and career ready. Great job Kaitlin!

Jamie Vargas Rocks School Counseling at JATC and Beyond

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

There are about 700 students who take advantage of the Career and Technical Education programs at Jordan Applied Technology Center each year. As part of the application process, students must demonstrate that they have the basic competencies needed to succeed in the programs to which they apply. Counselor Jamie Vargas has taken a keen interest in assuring that the most relevant competencies are being assessed, that the instruments being used meet high standards of quality, and that testing protocols are strictly followed. In addition, he closely monitors data to identify potential issues, e.g., appropriate gender and ethnic balances, and meaningful differences between students who are accepted and those who are not. In other words, Jamie Vargas is working diligently to keep his finger on the pulse of the student body to gauge health and wellness, and following through with policy and other changes as indicated.

Jamie Vargas also brought leadership to the development and implementation of the College and Career Ready Student Portfolio. A web-based guide outlines the core and supplemental requirements that students complete in order to demonstrate competencies in four areas: (1) Leadership; (2) Program Competency; (3) Career Readiness; and (4) College Readiness. An online guide with links takes students to support information, forms, and other documents. In addition, students can track their progress using a printed Student Portfolio Tracking Sheet. Vargas has generously shared both the philosophical underpinnings and the practical mechanics of the Portfolio. It is becoming a popular and much-valued tool for students, parents, and counselors in Utah and beyond.

Ignite Your Passion for Agriculture

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

During February 15-22, 2014 more than half a million FFA members across the country will celebrate National FFA Week. This year’s theme is Ignite and it embraces more than 80 years of FFA traditions while looking forward to the organization’s future.

FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through Agricultural Education. Today’s FFA members are tomorrow’s leaders of America’s number one industry, agriculture. Through agricultural and hands-on learning, FFA members are preparing for more than 300 career opportunities in the food, fiber and natural resources industry.

During the week, FFA chapters will conduct a variety of activities to help others in their school and community learn about FFA and Agricultural Education. Utah FFA chapters will celebrate National FFA Week by:

  • Attending the signing of a National FFA Week proclamation.
  • Participating in the FFA Olympics.
  • Recruiting new members to FFA.
  • Dressing up in their FFA blue jackets.
  • Organizing fundraisers to support FFA.

Did you know?
In 1947, at a National FFA Board of Directors meeting, the week of George Washington’s birthday was designated as National FFA Week. Today, FFA Week always runs Saturday to Saturday and encompasses February 22, Washington’s birthday.

Join FFA members across the country in celebrating National FFA Week. As part of the celebration, thank the farmers in your community for the food they provide for all of us.The National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through Agricultural Education to 579,678 student members in grades 7-12 who belong to one of 7,570 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.


Utah FCCLA Chapters Celebrate FCCLA Week

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

On Monday, February 10, 2014, the FCCLA State Officers joined other Career and Technical Education Student Organizations (CTSOs) for the annual CTSO Day on the Hill at the Utah State Capitol. The FCCLA State Officers advocated for Family and Consumer Sciences, FCCLA, and Career and Technical Education, as they talked to senators and representatives of the Utah State Legislature.

Read below how three Utah FCCLA chapters are celebrating FCCLA Week—
February 9-15:

The Layton High School chapter is selling chocolate covered strawberries. FCCLA members can help dip strawberries today after school, Thursday, February 13. The chapter officers will deliver the strawberries tomorrow on Valentine’s Day.

The American Fork High School chapter fed FCCLA members on Monday, wore FCCLA shirts on Tuesday, and gave Valentine’s to members on Wednesday. Today members are involved in a service project prior to attending an FCCLA area conference tomorrow.

The Syracuse High School chapter is creating and selling Valentine candy bouquets. The proceeds will go towards the FCCLA fund for area, state, and national competitions. During the week, the chapter had a member appreciation day where they celebrated their highest membership.

There are still a few days left to celebrate FCCLA Week, so click here for more ideas on how to celebrate. Remember to wear RED tomorrow and join in the conversation on social media by using #FCCLAWeek.

FCCLA members tell Utah CTE how you are celebrating FCCLA Week and CTE Month. Send your stories and photos to UtahCTE@schools.utah.gov.

Granite Technical Institute – Career Academies, Skilled Trades, High Tech, and More

Wednesday, February 12th, 2014

Just one step into Granite Technical Institute (GTI) and the high energy of students and staff is palpable. Everyone seems to be going somewhere, and they’re determined to be there in record time. Julie Bagley, Counselor, Work-Based Learning Specialist, and Health Science Advisor, attributes this to the fact that students have gone the extra mile to be here, and they have well-defined goals for what they will accomplish. There are 2,400 students who attend GTI, described as an “extension” of their home high schools as they list GTI courses right along with the courses taught within their own walls. GTI students take advantage of the infrastructure – from transportation and administration to career centers and highly qualified teachers – in order to pursue their career interests.

Julie Bagley describes a number of programs designed to inform the community and potential students of the opportunities available at Granite Technical Institute. For example, a recent Open House was expected to draw 1,500-2,000 attendees. This is a chance for programs to show off, and that often means “hands-on” experiences such as dissections, robotics competitions, the printing of T-shirts, and food preparation.

A program that enables ninth grade students to participate in GTI is enrollment in a 90-minute dual credit course – either English/Physics or English/BioAg. Students apply for this program, and must meet certain qualifications in order to make it a part of their individual College and Career Plan. Having participated in the ninth grade further empowers these students to take advantage of GTI opportunities as they plan the remainder of their high school experience.

The Ambassadors are fundamental to promoting GTI to their peers as well as to the community at large. Students must apply to be Ambassadors. They must have a 3.0 GPA and CPA (citizenship), and must be a student at the GTI for the full year. Applicants submit their transcripts and an essay on why they would like to be a GTI Ambassador. Ambassadors are involved in promotional events in the community and at both junior highs and high schools throughout the year. They help provide an authentic student-to-student link to GTI programs.

Julie Bagley herself is a walking advertisement of what makes GTI great. She practically oozes with enthusiasm about the students she serves, the opportunities GTI offers, and all the people – teachers, counselors, administrators and others at the school, district and state – who make Career and Technical Education an attractive and valuable choice for students.

#FCCLAWEEK: Join the Conversation

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

By: Mikaela Bingham
Utah FCCLA 2nd Vice President

As most of you know, February is Career and Technical Education Month! What you also may know is that it is also Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) Week! This action packed week begins February 9 and continues through February 15! Join FCCLA members, advisers, and supporters from across the country in the celebration of all things FCCLA! Stay connected with what schools are doing in Utah and across the country on social network! Use #FCCLAWeek to join the conversation and be involved!

Here’s what’s planned for National FCCLA Week:

Monday, February 10
Media Blitz: Hit up social networks and spread the word about what your chapter is up to! Take FCCLA out into the community by approaching local businesses about advocating for FCCLA! Get your whole school involved by advertising what your chapter is doing for FCCLA week!

Tuesday, February 11
Membership Recruitment –
iRecruit: FCCLA week is a great week to spread the word about FCCLA, if you haven’t already! Involve current members by sending them out to look for potential members! It’s never too late to join FCCLA!

Wednesday, February 12
Share Our StrengthNo Kid Hungry campaign: This is a time to raise and donate money for the FCCLA National Outreach Program, Share Our Strength that fights childhood hunger! Make and sell Valentine treats and send the proceeds to Share our Strength! Hold a “miracle minute” during lunch and see how much your school can raise for Share Our Strength!

Thursday, February 13
Membership Recognition: Celebrate your membership today and everyday by letting your members know that they’re awesome for being such devoted students! Showcase your members, send out thank-you cards, have an all member meal (breakfast, lunch.) Celebrate your amazing members!

Friday, February 14
RED out for FCCLA: Go out with a bang by wearing RED! Set up an “FCCLA members only” photo booth, decorate the halls with red, send out a special Valentine to advisers, and celebrate your LOVE for an amazing organization!

It’s never too late to get involved with FCCLA! National FCCLA Week and CTE Month is a great time to get excited for all that’s to come and all that’s involved with the Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America!

“Like” Utah FCCLA on Facebook and National FCCLA on Facebook
“Follow” Utah FCCLA on Twitter and National FCCLA on Twitter

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


Ideas for Celebrating SkillsUSA Week

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

February 9-15 is SkillsUSA Week and there are a lot of ways to celebrate. Some local chapters plan a different activity for each day of the week, while others pick one day and hold one or two events.

Below are some ideas for celebrating SkillsUSA Week:

Monday, February 10 – P.R. Day
> Make a school announcement, over the PA or school television station, about SkillsUSA Week and the special activities your chapter has planned.
> Hang SkillsUSA signs or banners throughout the school.
> Hold a poster or photo contest with prizes.
> Deliver SkillsUSA PSAs to local radio or television stations and invite the press to attend the events your chapter has planned during the week.
> Provide a news release and photographs to the school or local newspaper.
> Make a bulletin board or display about SkillsUSA for a school hallway.
> Set up a SkillsUSA information table in the school cafeteria to tell people about SkillsUSA.

Tuesday, February 11 – SkillsUSA Advisor Appreciation Day
> Make the instructors who support your program feel special and appreciated by hosting a lunch through the culinary program.
> Deliver cookies and a thank you note to instructors who support the program.
> Formally recognize the principal of your school with a certificate of appreciation and an honorary membership in SkillsUSA. Principals are vital in supporting your SkillsUSA chapter.

Wednesday, February 12 – Advocacy Day
SkillsUSA Week is an excellent time to make the community and business leaders in your community aware of your SkillsUSA chapter.
> Request a Proclamation from the Mayor, City Council, Board of Supervisors or School Board and ask if your local SkillsUSA officers can be present to receive it.
 > Invite local business, community and industry leaders to a chapter meeting to hear a presentation.
> Host an open house to showcase chapter activities and invite parents, community leaders, business and industry representatives, and middle school or elementary students who might be interested in technical career paths.
 > Visit a local elementary or middle school and talk about Career and Technical Education.

Thursday, February 13 – Leadership through Service Day
Conduct a community service activity to bring greater awareness to SkillsUSA.
 > Visit a nursing home to provide services to the residents.
> Hold a car care clinic.
 > Donate toys or other items to a local shelter or children’s hospital.
> Conduct a cleanup/early spring landscape program at your school.
> Offer to paint a mural at a day care center.

Friday, February 14 – Wear Red Day
Encourage all members to wear SkillsUSA T-shirts, polo shirts, or SkillsUSA official attire.
Share your SkillsUSA stories and explain that red is the color of the SkillsUSA official blazer.

Tell Utah CTE how your chapter is celebrating SkillsUSA Week. Send your stories and photos to UtahCTE@schools.utah.gov.

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


Celebrate FBLA Week

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

By James Carrington, Utah FBLA Central Region VP

FBLA chapters across the state of Utah are preparing for FBLA week, February 10-15, by planning activities to promote the FBLA organization, encourage school loyalty, show gratitude towards advisers, and develop business leadership. Chapters have planned activities that range from pizza parties with members to hosting business speakers in their community.

FBLA week gives chapters an opportunity to publicize their activities and successes, boost membership, and gear up for spring activities. Events hosted by local FBLA chapters include business dress day, game day, school spirit day, adviser appreciation day, FBLA luncheon, career awareness day, community service day, and a closing social. As chapters across the state of Utah celebrate FBLA week, members will have the opportunity to participate in amazing activities.

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

STEM Education: The Way it Was Meant to Be

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

A team of Career and Technical Education (CTE) Technology and Engineering students at Layton High School, in Davis School District, have implemented their STEM education experience in perfect fashion. Victoria Alvizurez, Christopher Erickson, Lauren Scarlet, Tyler Stevens, Rebecca Stromberg, and Danielle Taylor were given the task of identifying an actual societal need. Then, through the use of the knowledge and skills gained in their collective STEM classes, their task was to meet that challenge.

As part of the Ability One Design Challenge, the student team decided to assist persons with significant disabilities to achieve their maximum employment potential. Guided by adept, intuitive instructors, and coupled with Pioneer Adult Rehabilitation Center (PARC) they were able to assist employees in increasing productivity by creating a “Truss Assembly Assistor.”

The student team produced the video below showing the mechanics of the “Truss Assembly Assistor” and how it made a difference in the ease of assembling the truss and increased productivity for the PARC employees.

If you’re inquisitive, are good at figuring out how things work and applying physics to solve problems, consider a career in engineering. Talk to your school counselor about registering for a course in one of the two CTE Technology and Engineering Education Pathways.