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Meet Ronald Johnson: Future Network Systems Engineer

May 4th, 2015

Ronald Johnson photo - color“CTE courses have helped me prepare for my life after high school by giving me the knowledge, technical skill, and experience that I need to help prepare myself for the future. I have been focusing on Information Technology because it is the field that I have always wanted to go into. This field is the future, and I want to be a part of it.

“My goal in Information Technology is to gain as much knowledge and experience as I can to succeed in the field that I love. After my training at the DATC, I plan to find a job in application development. I see myself involved in multiple aspects of this field. This experience will impact my family greatly, because I will be the first person in my family going to college. I will also be giving my mother relief, knowing I will be okay in the future, and it will also set a good example for my younger sister.”

—Ronald Johnson, Mountain High School

UtahCTE.org congratulates Ronald on the CTE Scholarship and Tuition Award he received to Davis Applied Technology College. Ronald was one of 102 students honored at the CTE Scholarships and Tuition Awards banquet on Tuesday, April 28, 2015.

Meet Trever Gardner: Future Diesel Mechanic

May 4th, 2015

Trever Gardner photo 2“I am very grateful for the opportunity I have had to take CTE classes while I have been in high school. Along with my CTE courses, I have completed a CTE Internship at a local garage in my community. Because of the courses I have taken, the safety certifications I have earned, and my internship, Jiffy Lube hired me on the spot. Many of my friends are amazed that I am earning so much money while still in high school, but I understand that my CTE courses gave me real-life, marketable skills.

“I understand that Jiffy Lube is simply a stepping stone to my future goals. The money I earn at Jiffy Lube will help me pay for school, as well as develop additional soft skills in customer service. I am learning, by working with Jiffy Lube, how a sound business model works.

“Using the CTE Pathways program has helped me learn to set goals and make wise choices when picking elective courses during high school. My goals for the future will be to get my diesel mechanic certifications, as well as a business degree, which will help me to someday own my own business.”

—Trever Gardner, Grantsville High School

UtahCTE.org congratulates Trever on the CTE Scholarship and Tuition Award he received to Salt Lake Community College. Trever was one of 102 students honored at the CTE Scholarships and Tuition Awards banquet on Tuesday, April 28, 2015.

Meet Michael Peters: Future Engineering Technician

May 4th, 2015

Michael Peters photo“I want to be an engineering technician and work with engineers and designers in changing and modifying designs to make them work better. I really want to make a difference in the world.

“I have completed 21 college credits even before entering college. I feel more prepared to go into college classes because I have been taking CTE classes. The tech design classes have taught me computer-aided design, and I will be a certified draftsman by the end of the class. I will be able to take this [certification] to any drafting company and they will recognize that I have been trained. CTE classes have also helped me think more like an engineer and helped me open my mind to the new things that are possible. I have had college-level classes in high school, so I am ready for the level of learning required in college.”

—Michael Peters, Bountiful High School

UtahCTE.org congratulates Michael on the CTE Scholarship and Tuition Award he received to Utah Valley University. Michael was one of 102 students honored at the CTE Scholarships and Tuition Awards banquet Tuesday, April 28, 2015.


Career Snapshot: Two Quick Lists

May 4th, 2015

Innovations_HS_IMG_0629The Utah Department of Workforce Services has updated their Utah Job Outlook brochure with 2012-2022 data. Here’s a look at what’s in store when you check out the full publication; two quick lists:

Occupations With Most Annual Openings*
*   Numbers in parentheses reflect the number of projected annual openings statewide.                                      

  • Retail Salespersons (2,360)
  • Customer Service Representatives (2,340)
  • Food Prep. & Serving Workers, incl. Fast Food (2,060)
  • Cashiers (1,590)
  • Waiters & Waitresses (1,130)
  • Office Clerks, General (1,080)
  • Laborers & Freight, Stock, & Material Movers (1,050)
  • Registered Nurses (1,000)
  • General & Operations Managers (970)

Fastest Growing Utah Occupations**
** Percentages in parentheses reflect projected annual growth rate for occupations with at least 100 openings annually.

  • Health Specialties Teachers, Postsecondary (6.5%)
  • Market Research Analysts & Marketing Specialists (5.3%)
  • Home Health Aides (5.1%)
  • Nurse Practitioners (4.7%)
  • Medical Secretaries (4.5%)
  • Cement Masons & Concrete Finishers (4.4%)
  • Medical & Clinical Laboratory Technicians (4.2%)
  • Drywall & Ceiling Tile Installers (4.2%)
  • Personal Care Aides (4.2%)
  • Software Developers, Applications (4.1%)
  • Dental Hygienists (4.1%)
  • Painters, Construction & Maintenance (4.1%)


Kaitlin Hallam: 2015 Utah Sterling Scholar

May 1st, 2015

Kaitlin Hallam 2015 Sterling Scholar

Congratulations to Kaitlin Hallam, senior at Spanish Fork High School, who was selected as the 2015 Utah Sterling Scholar in the area of Skilled and Technical Sciences. Kaitlin has been an active member of FFA since 2011. From building an 18 foot, dual 7500 pound axle, flatbed utility dump trailer to raising a 38.6 pound tom turkey to placing first in the Animal Systems competition at the 2015 FFA Agriscience Fair, Kaitlin has been very successful in each project she has pursued. In fact, she is currently completing a 32 foot gooseneck electric over hydraulic tilt trailer.

Throughout the past several years, Kaitlin has won many awards as she competed against her peers in a variety of regional and state competitions. Her skill, talent, perseverance, and desire to do well has catapulted her to achieve her goals as she prepares to advance from high school to college and career.

Kaitlin has developed a great deal of self-confidence through her achievements, but says her greatest feeling of self-worth came from turkeys she raised for her agri-science research project, and then donated those turkeys to needy families in the area at Thanksgiving time. “The ability to help those who are truly in need has been the greatest feeling of satisfaction and joy in the world,” said Kaitlin.

Kaitlin FFA Nationals 2014Kaitlin will tell you that much of the success she has enjoyed has been the direct result of an incredible volley of local CTE teachers and state advisors who have continually dared her to step out of her comfort zone on a daily basis and venture to be more. Her toughest challenge has been welding in a nontraditional occupation for women.

“I am usually one of few girls in most of my CTE classes. This triggers one of three reactions from the rest of the boys: instant harassment, showing off, or competition. I try to remain calm in any situation and make friends. I have found that most boys are receptive to my friendship and are eager to be helpful. They even seem to enjoy it when I am able to keep up with a new skill or even out do them from time to time. However, there are a few who expect me to cower to them. This is problematic because I am a fierce competitor and I know that I can do anything that I put my mind to. Overall, I have enjoyed learning how to balance what I say and do without compromising my own skills and performance,” said Kaitlin.

Kaitlin - auto repairKaitlin acknowledges the impact FFA and CTE has had on her education and preparing her for college and career. “My involvement in the Skilled and Technical Sciences [classes] already has and continues to enrich my life by helping me develop lasting values like hard work, dedication, and responsibility. Welding has given me an opportunity to train my hands to be steady, my eyes to be sharp, my mind to concentrate, and my imagination to go wild. Furniture construction has pushed me outside of my comfort zone and helped me gain knowledge in a subject I knew absolutely nothing about. Auto body has shown me that even if something is old and broken down it can still be re-built and have lasting value. Last but not least, leadership has given me the ability to plan, organize and not only lead people through a difficult situation, but support and encourage them to do the same.

farming 2“Beside these skills, I have learned crucial values, including hard work, dedication, and responsibility. I have learned how to set goals which have led to success in many areas. I have also realized how much more I need to learn in order to be truly successful. My CTE classes and my leadership experience in 4-H and FFA have laid a strong foundation on which I can build upon. I plan to go to college to complete a teaching degree. I like the idea of ‘paying it forward.’ I have had a wonderful education experience and I hope to provide that for the future students I will teach.”

After graduating from high school in May Kaitlin will continue her studies at Brigham Young University. She plans to complete a degree in education and hopes to teach in some area of agriculture.

Watch Kaitlin’s Journey


2015 Sterling Scholar Awards Ceremony

Utah CTSO Members to Compete in National Competitions

May 1st, 2015

Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO) student members are preparing to compete at national CTSO competitions. The top competitors from each CTSO competed first in district competitions and then advanced to state competitions. The first place winners from state will compete this summer (June or July) in national competitions. UtahCTE.org wishes each CTSO student member success as they show off their skills and compete.

National_SkillsUSA_Officers_2014-15SkillsUSA 51st Annual National Leadership and Skills Conference
June 22-26, 2015 Louisville, KY
SkillsUSA – An Association of Skilled and Technical Sciences Education Students
Conference theme: Champions at Work
Keynote speaker: TBA
Watch: What is SkillsUSA?
View: Conference Agenda

The mission of SkillsUSA is to empower its members to become world-class workers, leaders, and responsible American citizens. The 2015 SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference will showcase Career and Technical Education students. More than 15,000 students, teachers, education leaders, and business partners from more than 1,100 national corporations, trade associations, businesses and labor unions will participate in the event. More than 6,000 students will compete in 99 hands-on skill and leadership competitions.

photo 6 - Utah HOSA state officersHOSA 38th Annual National Leadership Conference
June 24-27, 2015 Anaheim, CA
HOSA – Health Occupations Students of America
Conference theme: LEAD
Keynote speaker: Dr. Sampson Davis
View: Conference Guide
View: 2015 HOSA State Winners

The mission of HOSA is to enhance the delivery of compassionate, quality health care by providing opportunities for knowledge, skill, and leadership development of all health science education students. HOSA students are the pioneers who will tackle the hardships and will LEAD us through the health challenges of the 21st century and beyond. The 38th Annual HOSA National Leadership Conference will bring together more than 8,500 future health professionals from 50 states and territories to experience HOSA at its absolute best. The National Leadership Conference provides a great opportunity for students and advisors to learn and grow. HOSA members will participate in educational and social learning activities, tour healthcare facilities, visit exhibits presented by professional healthcare associations, and compete in events.

2014-15 state officersFBLA National Leadership Conference
June 29-July 2, 2015 Chicago, IL
FBLA – Future Business Leaders of America
Conference theme: Step Up to the Challenge
Keynote speaker: John Beede
Watch: FBLA Conference Promotional Video
View: Conference Guide
View: 2015 FBLA State Winners

The mission of FBLA is to bring business and education together in a positive working relationship through innovative leadership and career development programs. At the National Leadership Conference, FBLA members will convene to compete in leadership events, share their successes, and learn new ideas about shaping their career future through workshops and exhibits. This four-day conference is considered the pinnacle of the FBLA experience, especially for those running for national office. FBLA has forged partnerships with industry leaders to underwrite competitive events and scholarships for students achieving national ranking.

TSA state officersTSA National Conference
June 28-July 2, 2015 Dallas, TX
TSA – Technology Student Association
Conference theme: Designing Your Dreams
Keynote speaker: Dr. Jessica Chandler
Watch: TSA Conference Promotional Video
View: Conference Schedule
View: 2015 TSA State Winners

The mission of the Technology Student Association (TSA) is to foster personal growth, leadership, and provide opportunities in technology, innovation design, and engineering. During this annual conference over 65 middle school and high school technology-based student competitions will be held, based on principles and concepts learned through projects during the school year in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects. Approximately 5,000 TSA members from across the country are expected to attend the conference.

FCCLA photo 1FCCLA National Leadership Conference
July 5-9, 2015 Washington, D.C.
FCCLA – Family, Career and Community Leaders of America
Conference theme: Together We Are . . .
Keynote speaker: TBA
Watch: FCCLA Conference Promotional Video
View: Conference Schedule
View: 2015 FCCLA State Winners

The mission of FCCLA is to promote personal growth and leadership development through Family and Consumer Sciences Education. At the FCCLA National Leadership Conference student members will participate in workshops, network with members, compete for gold, and unite for amazing general sessions. Together We Are Active. Together We Are Leaders. Together We Are Family. Together We Are Stronger. Together We Are Healthy. Together We Are Ready.

We want to hear about the national leadership conference you attend and the skill competition you participate in. Send your stories to utahcte@schools.utah.gov.

More than 22,000 Utah secondary Career and Technical Education students are members of a Career and Technical Student Organization. CTSO members are doing great things and are having a positive impact in schools and communities throughout the state.

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.

College and Career Readiness Counseling

April 23rd, 2015

IMG_0136_blurrThe National Office of School Counseling Advocacy (NOSCA) has defined eight components of college and career readiness counseling. They recommend that six of the eight be applied in both elementary and middle schools. The six components to be shared across grades K-8 are:

  1. College Aspirations
  2. Academic Planning for College and Career Readiness
  3. Enrichment and Extracurricular Engagement
  4. College and Career Exploration and Selection Process
  5. College and Career Assessments
  6. College Affordability Planning

NOSCA’s Elementary School Counselor’s Guide is the first in the series of Guides developed to help school counselors establish a college-going culture across K-12, promote college and career readiness for all students, and close gaps between low-performing or traditionally underrepresented students.

Casey LaytonMost agree that elementary school counselors can make a big difference in the lives of students. Unfortunately, there are very few districts in Utah that have implemented school counseling at the elementary level in their schools. But Davis School District is a shining exception. While many school districts in Utah do not yet have any elementary school counselors, Davis has been employing them for about 20 years. Why? Comprehensive Counseling and Guidance Director for Davis School District, Casey Layton, explains:

“I don’t take the credit for the hard work my predecessors did. Diann Davis and Pam Jacobsen knew the importance of a vertically aligned K-12 Comprehensive Counseling and Guidance Program, and they got counselors into our elementary schools. My goal has been to make sure everyone knows they matter.”

With 60 elementary schools in the district, it has been a challenge for Layton to keep the funding for elementary counselors amid $80 million in budget cuts in the last 7 years. However, he tirelessly advocates for them because of the difference that early intervention makes. Most elementary school counselors in Davis are assigned to two schools, and balance their time according to each school’s demonstrated need. Counselors teach “Essential Lessons” to young students, as well as perform other duties such as individual and group counseling and responsive services. They closely collaborate with the building administrator to assure that student needs are being met. Layton adds, “Our counselors become the ‘go-to’ person in the school. While administrators may rotate to different schools, counselors typically stay at their schools longer. They build rapport with the students, their families, and the community at large, and they help establish and maintain a positive school culture. We can’t afford not to have them.”

More about Davis School District’s elementary comprehensive guidance curriculum can be found here.


Microsoft Office Specialist Utah State Championship

April 21st, 2015


Congratulations to Ryan Decker, student at Timpanogous High School, who is a 2015 Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) National Champion. He placed second in the Microsoft Excel 2013 competition that took place in Orlando, Florida.

Certiport Names Microsoft Office Specialist U.S. National Champions


Utah students, between the ages of 13 and 22, interested in participating in the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) Utah State Championship and qualifying for the MOS U.S. National Championship must pass one of the following exams by Wednesday, May 20, 2015.

> Microsoft Office Specialist Word (2013 or 2010)
> Microsoft Office Specialist Excel (2013 or 2010)
> Microsoft Office Specialist PowerPoint (2013 or 2010)

The student who submits the highest passing score will be named the 2015 MOS Utah State Champion in their exam track. All previous exam scores during the 2014-15 school year will be factored into the MOS State Championship rankings.

Current Rankings
As of April 13, 2015, the schools listed below have the top three students in each exam track.

MOS Word 2013
1. Timpanogos High School
2. North Sanpete High School
3. Snow Canyon Middle School

MOS Excel 2013
1. Timpanogos High School
2. Herriman High School
3. Dixie Middle School

MOS PowerPoint 2013
1. Brighton High School
2. Salem Hills Jr. High School
3. Box Elder High School

MOS Word 2010
1. Canyons Technical Education Center
2. Canyons Technical Education Center
3. Canyons Technical Education Center

MOS Excel 2010
1. Tooele High School
2. Canyons Technical Education Center
3. Canyons Technical Education Center

MOS PowerPoint 2010
1. Copper Hills High School
2. Copper Hills High School
3. Copper Hills High School

Copper Hills High School was selected by Microsoft to be featured in a promotional video highlighting the importance of becoming certified as a Microsoft Office Specialist. “The students coming out of my class, these guys are rock stars with Microsoft. They’re absolutely amazing. When they become certified I look at them as 100 percent as good as I am in whatever the certification is,” said Brandon Jacobson, Business teacher at Copper Hills High School.

During the month of May, the respective state champions will be announced, awards will be dispersed, and invitations will be extended to participate in the MOS U.S. National Championship in Orlando, Florida, June 18-20, 2015.

Makayla Hendricks to Receive National CTE Student Innovator Recognition Award

April 20th, 2015

Photo - Makayla HendricksMakayla Hendricks, Utah FCCLA State President, has been selected to receive the National CTE Student Innovator Recognition Award by the Association of Career and Technical Education (ACTE). This is an incredible honor for the Bountiful High School junior and for Utah FCCLA. The National CTE Student Innovator Recognition Award acknowledges students who exhibit excellence, dedication, leadership, and innovation within the field of Career and Technical Education (CTE), as well as within their respective Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO).

Nominees were evaluated on the following criteria:

  • Work indicating a high level of accomplishment in the field of CTE. Accomplishments including everything from high grades to completion of innovative individual and group projects—inside and outside the classroom—related to CTE.
  • Involvement with co-curricular CTE opportunities, including CTE related leadership activities within schools, communities, and a CTSO.

Mckayla appreciates the opportunity she has had to participate in CTE, FCCLA, and FBLA. “Career and Technical Education has played a large part in my success in high school, and in my young adult life. CTE courses have been my favorite classes, and they are also the ones that I’ve learned the most from. By excelling in CTE courses, my high involvement in FCCLA, as well as FBLA, and my experience through the CTE Internship program qualified me to receive the National CTE Student Innovator Recognition Award.”

When Mckayla was asked how CTE has made in impact on her life she responded, “CTE courses have played a large role in my life, and will continue to be a part of it. The skills I’ve learned through CTE courses and by participating in CTSOs have far better prepared me for my future than any other activity. CTE courses and CTSOs have challenged me and changed my life. I wouldn’t be half the person I am today without Career and Technical Education.”

Virtual Healthcare Interactive: Mother-Infant

April 16th, 2015

JATC_HS_IMG_2732On Thursday, April 23, 2015, Utah Career and Technical Education (CTE) high school students across the state of Utah will participate in a Virtual Healthcare Interactive (VHI) live broadcast, in partnership with the Utah State Office of Education (USOE) and Intermountain Healthcare.

The two-hour event begins with students watching a pre-recorded mother-infant surgery, followed by a live chat with surgeons/physicians using real-time technology. In conjunction with the live broadcast, students will receive exposure to a variety of healthcare careers related to the surgery, as well as pre- and post-event curricula and activities designed to provide them with the background information they need in order to understand the surgery/procedure.

There will be eight broadcast sites across the state, including those within technology centers. More than 350 high school students from 15 high schools in 7 school districts, as well as physicians from Intermountain Healthcare, will participate in this event. The participating school districts are Cache, Canyons, Juab, Provo, Rich, Tooele, and Weber.

With increased confidentiality concerns, Work-Based Learning experiences have decreased in the healthcare area over the last few years. Engaging students through technology allows hospitals to bring more students into their environment with limited liability exposure and minimal interruption to the hospital.

USOE Health Science Education Specialist Rachel Decker says, “With more stringent privacy laws and regulations, it has become increasingly difficult for students to do job shadows and internships in a hospital setting. Through the Virtual Healthcare Interactive partnership, the students are able to learn about a variety of careers involved in the patient care process and then observe an operation as if they were there in the operating room. They also have the opportunity to interact with the surgeon and ask questions as they are watching the surgery. VHI allows students chances to experience an operating room and surgery that they would normally not have.”

Healthcare is one of the largest and fastest-growing industries in the U.S., employing over 18 million workers in more than 200 careers. Over the past decade, the healthcare industry has added 2.6 million jobs nationwide. According to the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, the U.S. will need 5.6 million more healthcare workers by the year 2020.