CTE classes fly under the radar


Julian Bloom

In a Culinary Arts, a CTE class, students cook a variety of foods under the intruction of Melanie Hammericksen.

‘What are CTE classes?’ ask CTE students.

Have you ever heard of Career Technical Education (CTE) classes? Are you interested in them? Are you sure you’re not already in one?

CTE classes can provide students with academic and technical skills and can help prepare them for real-world jobs. Oddly enough, however, many students in CTE programs don’t even know they are in them. Some don’t even know what CTE classes are.

Design and applied arts is one CTE class. Taught by Addy Kessler, the class teaches ceramics, painting, glasswork, and art history.

According to the PPS website, “This course provides in-depth exploration of communication, self-expression and creative problem-solving through utilitarian, sculptural and painterly forms of ceramics.”

“Our sculpture program is pretty well known,” says Kessler. “But I think that not a lot of students know what CTE is.”

Another class that falls under the CTE category is culinary arts, led by Melanie Hammericksen. About 120 students are enrolled in this class  this semester.

Hammericksen wishes more people knew about her class, as well as CTE classes in general.

“[CTE involves] more hands-on, project-based learning,” says Hammericksen. “[My students] are cooking almost every day in here.”

When asked if they knew their culinary arts class was a CTE, most students said they did not.
A third CTE class is intro to business management. Ron Waugh, the teacher, believes more students should take CTE courses, and that they are more than normal electives.

“[CTEs have] that tie-in to the real world,” says Waugh. “That direct link to real life experiences.”

“A what class?” responded one student when asked if he knew that the class was CTE, illustrating that many students were unaware that they were in a CTE class.

Mass communications and advanced mass communications (which produces The Cardinal Times and Beyond the Flock magazine) are also classified as CTE courses.