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Director's Weekly Memo 2016-9-19

CareerTech State Board meets in Stillwater in September; CareerTech employees participate in Stillwater Area United Way Day of Caring; CareerTech Champion: Todd Kirkland - Mid-Del Technology Center; Tech Centers That Work participants review survey data at workshop; Project Lead the Way conference set for Oct. 27; Re-Entry Job Fair planned for released offenders; useful links; and CareerTech events

CareerTech State Board meets in Stillwater in September

Board meeting
Photos from left, Meridian Technology students and instructor Donna Cantrell; Becky Hammack; Natalie Jordan.
The State Board of Career and Technology Education met at ODCTE in Stillwater in September.

Meridian Technology Center culinary arts students provided breakfast items and spoke with the board about the impact CareerTech education has had on them.

The board also heard from Becky Hammack, a Stillwater Middle School teacher who won a 2016 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, and Natalie Jordan, Francis Tuttle Technology Center, who was named the Oklahoma CareerTech New Teacher of the Year at Summer Conference.

Thank you to Hammack, Jordan and Meridian Technology Center’s Donna Cantrell and students Savannah Rilee of Perry, Javier Gonzalez of Stillwater and Billie Mouton of Mulhall-Orlando for being a part of our CareerTech board meeting.


CareerTech employees participate in Stillwater Area United Way Day of Caring

Day of Caring
CareerTech employees took time off work to volunteer for the Stillwater Area United Way Day of Caring. They worked at the Boy Scout Troop 818 Scout Hut.
Several CareerTech staff members took time off work Sept. 15 to join 500 Stillwater, Perkins and Cushing residents for the 21st annual Stillwater Area United Way Day of Caring to kick off this year’s SAUW campaign.

The Day of Caring is an opportunity to help the United Way’s partner agencies, clients and others with projects that they might not have the staff, finances or time to complete. The CareerTech team worked with Boy Scout Troop 818 and help make repairs to its meeting location. The Scout Hut serves not only as the troop’s weekly meeting place but also as a location for monthly area meetings, Order of the Arrow chapter meetings, event planning and councilwide adult leadership training. CareerTech employees painted, repaired ceilings, trimmed trees, cleaned gutters and more.

Beyond helping partners, the Day of Caring is an opportunity to see firsthand the needs of the community and the work of Stillwater Area United Way. Volunteers see the impact of their contributions to the campaign and the impact their donations can make on those in the community.

Great work on the Boy Scout Hut, CareerTech employees!


CareerTech Champion: Todd Kirkland - Mid-Del Technology Center

Todd Kirkland
Veteran Todd Kirkland earned an LPN degree at Mid-Del Technology Center before going on to earn a bachelor's degree in nursing and a master's degree as a family nurse practitioner.
THEN: Todd Kirkland joined the Army Reserves to save up for upcoming education expenses. He knew he wanted to pursue a career in nursing, and after two combat deployments to Iraq, he enrolled in Mid-Del Technology Center’s practical nursing program. En route to an LPN degree, Todd gained experience in both mental health and medical surgical hospital settings. The CareerTech training was a great introduction to the nursing profession and allowed him to

  • Enroll in the LPN to BSN program at the University of Oklahoma – Tulsa.
  • Graduate from OU and go to work as a registered nurse.
  • Continue his education in the family nurse practitioner master’s degree program.

NOW: A certified family nurse practitioner working for Warren Clinic Urgent Care in Broken Arrow, OK. The journey to his dream job took 12 years, but he says it was definitely worth the time and effort.

“This is the job I envisioned years ago when I was finishing high school.”

Todd Kirkland


Tech Centers That Work participants review survey data at workshop

Staff members from 13 tech centers attended a TCTW Data Workshop Sept. 13-14 at Metro Technology Centers to obtain snapshots of their schools’ overall performance.

The workshop was designed to assist tech center, district and state leaders in analyzing the 2016 TCTW Student and Teacher Survey data in order to make changes in curriculum, instruction and school practices that lead to improved student achievement, graduation rates and college- and career-readiness.

Participants reviewed data on quality career and technology studies, work-based learning, time and support for students, literacy and numeracy across the curriculum, career pathway pipelines, student school and community experiences, academic and career guidance, continuous school improvement and guidance and advisement.

The data was used to identify challenges and develop an action plan for addressing the challenges as well as benchmarking success.


Project Lead the Way conference set for Oct. 27

Registration for the Oklahoma Project Lead The Way State Conference is now live.

Project Lead The Way CEO Vince Bertram will be the keynote speaker this year, and the conference will expand to include sessions for current PLTW teachers in addition to administrators, counselors, STEM tours and schools new to PLTW. Current students will also share their STEM experiences and answer questions.

Please make plans to attend the Oklahoma PLTW State Conference. You can register for the conference at


Re-Entry Job Fair planned for released offenders

Oklahoma CareerTech is joining with other organizations and government agencies to sponsor a Re-Entry Workshop and Job Fair for ex-offenders, felons, parolees and others from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 30.

The job fair will be at Oklahoma City Community College in College Union Hall.

Workshops will be from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Topics scheduled are interviewing techniques, effective networking and resume building. Also, motivational speaker DePorres “Dee” Hopkins will present a workshop.

In addition to Oklahoma CareerTech, the event is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Justice Western District of Oklahoma, the Oklahoma City mayor’s office, the Oklahoma City Urban League, the Oklahoma Department of Corrections, the U.S. Bureau of Prisons and the Oklahoma Chamber of Commerce.


Useful links

Oklahoma Horizon Schedule

Follow us on Twitter at @okcareertech and find us on Facebook at OKCareerTech.

For news about Oklahoma’s CareerTech System, subscribe to CareerTech communications.

State Agency Assistance at a Glance

National Center for Research in Career and Technical Education

Adult Basic Education Foundations newsletters

Oklahoma Works

OK Career Guide

CareerTech Curriculum


CareerTech Events

Oklahoma Project Lead The Way Conference Registration Open, Sept. 9-Oct. 1

OK Career Guide Training, Sept. 16-Sept. 30

Teacher Institute 2015-2016 Cohort, Sept. 23

Teacher Institute 2015-2016 Cohort, Sept. 24

TSA Fall Leadership Conference - Weatherford, Oct. 5

Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself. - John Dewey


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