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February is Career Technical Education Month

February 17, 2014


Career and Technical Education is celebrated in February as a vital component of a productive workforce.

February's designation as Career Technical Education (CTE) Month received strong support from President Obama’s State of the Union Address emphasizing the importance of education that trains individuals for successful careers.

“I’ve asked Vice President Biden to lead an across-the-board reform of America’s training programs to make sure they have one mission: train Americans with the skills employers need, and match them to good jobs that need to be filled right now. It means connecting companies to community colleges that can help design training to fill their specific needs. And if Congress wants to help, you can concentrate funding on proven programs that connect more ready-to-work Americans with ready-to-be-filled jobs,” the President stated.

Strong career and technical education programs, like those alluded to in President Obama’s speech, are an essential part of an education system that produces college and career ready students and work-ready adults that are the backbone of America’s economic success. Those programs are often found in our nation's community colleges which are seen as the heart of community education, training and opportunities.

Community colleges such as Bevill State offer CTE training in a variety of programs including Vehicle Technology Repair, Electrical Systems Technology, Computer Science, Business Office Management, Cosmetology/Barbering, Child Development, Machine Tool Technology, Truck Driver Training, Welding Technology, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Technology, Drafting Design Engineering Technology, Mining Technology, and Health Sciences careers. These programs provide residents training for a new career in two years or less in jobs that are often in demand with high wages.

In addition to training, community colleges also offer career fairs and workforce expos designed to bring together local businesses and community members seeking employment. Bevill State has two upcoming career/workforce events: The Hamilton campus will hold a C3 Career Expo on Friday, February 28 and the Sumiton campus will hold a Career and Workforce Expo on Thursday, March 6.

According to Georgetown University's Center on Education and the Workforce, there will be 55 million job openings in the economy through 2020. Thirty percent of the job openings will require some college or an associate’s degree and individuals that only possess a high school diploma will have fewer employment options. The United States will fall short by 5 million workers with a postsecondary education.

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