Local high school seniors prepare for high-demand careers post-graduation

Local News

The curriculum focuses on real-world, hands-on experience

CHAMPION, Ohio (WKBN) – February is Career and Technical Education month and the Trumbull Career and Technical Center showcased their programs that prepare students for high-wage, high-demand careers.

Due to the pandemic, many jobs are in greater demand.

Upon graduation, TCTC students will have the opportunity to obtain certifications in various fields that allow them to enter the workforce, or continue on to further their education.

The school calls it their “three E’s”. Each student when they join their program, will identify their goals: enlistment, employment, or enrollment into college or trade school.

The curriculum focuses on real-world, hands-on experience. For nursing students, that means using each other for practice when drawing blood. This experience allows them to get prepared to become a State Tested Nursing Assistant, STNA.

“It’s genuinely given me a head start. So, Ms. Meyer has taught us how to study properly and the actual workload that they (college/job) are going to put on us,” said senior pre-nursing student Anna MacKenzie who plans on furthering her education at Cleveland State.

“I have learned more than I could ever learn at this age. I mean, I’m 17 years-old and I’m a certified STNA, so that’s great. I mean…my freshmen year I never would have thought that I’d come this far and it’s because of coming to this technical school,” said senior pre-nursing student Makayla Marro.

“I definitely made a good choice coming here and it’s definitely a good life-changer for me and many other people who go here at TCTC and I’m very grateful,” said senior early education student Angelena Baum.

These students have been learning on a hybrid model, spending half the time online learning and the other half on campus. Barb Meyer, pre-nursing phlebotomy instructor says it’s been hard getting her kids motivated.

“They need their academic classes to graduate from high school. So, that has been a very big struggle this pandemic to get our kids to want to do the theory part of their work, as well as the hands on,” said Meyer.

They have some fun learning to draw blood from one another in phlebotomy lab to keep spirits high.

Pre-nursing is not the only program in high demand.

“We have people call all the time, employers around the area, preschools asking if we have, you know, seniors that we might recommend or graduated seniors who have already gotten their CDA, we get phone calls all the time,” said early education instructor Ashley Chilton.

“Just within this past month I’ve had three independent shops reach out to me, kind of knocking down my door looking for potential employees,” said auto collision instructor Brad Ronyak.

The early education program allows students to work with their instructor and lead classrooms with preschool aged children. They read books and do other activities while in the classroom.

“They (TCTC students) get first aid trained, CPR trained, trained in commutable disease, trained in child abuse and neglect, and then we also work towards a CDA, which is a Child Development Associate. If they want to go right into the job market after high school, and they want to skip college, with those certifications, they can get hired at just about any preschool,” said Chilton.

Over in the auto collision program, they are able to not only work on real cars, but also get to bring in their own projects. Senior Viola McClimans brought her motorcycle into shop to work on.

“She was white, so I decided to paint her black to match the red frame and get the wheels pattern coated, so it can accent off the redness too,” said McClimans.

There are 30 programs that students can join their last two years of high school in order to gain a step in the workforce.

“They make us proud, they really do. They really do a nice job. I am pleased with the fact that they can then go out and they can be productive members of our society. And they can go and help us work and do well at their jobs,” said Meyer.

To find out more information on all the programs offered at TCTC, you can visit their website.

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