Rutgers University. Yale University. Northeastern University. Stevens University. University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. These are among the colleges that seniors from Union County Vocational-Technical Schools in Scotch Plains, New Jersey are headed this fall.
As one parent of a Yale-bound senior put it, “This is what high school should be for every student.” The Administration agrees, having issued both its blueprint for Perkins reauthorization in April 2012 and proposed a $300 million High School Redesign in the FY 2014 budget. Assistant Secretary for Vocational and Adult Education Brenda Dann-Messier states, “Our students shouldn’t have to make a decision between college or a career; every student needs to be prepared for both.” Union County Vocational-Technical Schools has turned this vision into a reality and, at the same time, become a school of first choice for students in Union County. Assistant Secretary Dann-Messier had the opportunity to experience the vision first-hand during her recent visit on May 23.
It used to be that enrollment in career and technical education, much less a full-time area career center, would not be the best option for students preparing for college, particularly at one of the leading universities in the nation. Union County Vocational-Technical Schools has fundamentally changed this situation and now makes enrollment in career and technical education the “sought-after option” for high school students.
Union County Vocational-Technical Schools offers five academy schools on its campus, including The Academy for Allied Health Sciences, The Academy for Information Technology, and a Magnet High School which focuses on STEM-related programs. Students participate in rigorous academic courses that are integrated with their career and technical education courses, complete work-based learning, earn college credit for courses taken during high school, and earn industry-recognized certificates.
School administration officials attribute their schools’ success to ongoing partnerships with business/industry and postsecondary education to develop and implement their programs. Students credit the teaching staff and career guidance counselors who help them acquire work-based learning opportunities, complete FASFA forms, and submit college applications. Parents recognize the entire school team for helping students gain the academic, career-related, and employability skills that help them prepare for their future.
The U.S. Department of Labor reported that the economy added 236,000 non-farm jobs in February, according to their preliminary figures. Industries that added workers in Career and Technical Education pathways include Construction, Healthcare, Leisure and Hospitality, and the Motion Picture and Sound Recording Industries.
Industries with the most workers added to payrolls in the last month include:
- +44,100 Admninistrative and Waste Services
- +39,100 Health care and Social Assistance
- +31,700 Specialty Trade Contractors
- +23,700 Retail Trade
- +20,800 Motion Picture and Sound Recording
- +26,800 Professional and Technical Services
- +20,600 Accomodations and Food Services
Industries with largest reductions in the number of workers in the last month include:
- -31,700 Electronics and Appliance Stores
- -14,700 Educational Services
- -10,000 Government
Visit www.BLS.gov to see the press release, access employment figures by industry, and dig deeper into state and local data.
Employment figures based on preliminary data reported by BLS for February 2013.