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Weekly Memo 2014-11-17

Devon sponsors opportunities in STEM for FFA students; National Technical Honor Society held Fall Leadership conference; great partnership continues; ACTE features Oklahoma CareerTech biosciences in fact sheet; digital course development update; useful links and my schedule for the week.
Weekly Memo 2014-11-17

Michael Jordan is the first former player to own an NBA franchise.

“Some people want it to happen, some wish it would happen, others make it happen.” -- Michael Jordan

Devon sponsors opportunities in STEM for FFA students

Devon Energy is donating $25,000 a year for three years to Oklahoma FFA. The company announced Nov. 7 that it will sponsor the Oklahoma FFA Foundation’s Agriscience Fair for three years. The sponsorship will include money for winning students, FFA chapters and teachers. In addition, Devon Energy will give a $1,000 scholarship for the project selected by fair judges that best relates to the oil and gas industry. Devon leaders are excited about the potential of FFA members selecting oil and gas industry-related projects that fit into existing Agriscience Fair categories such as environmental services/natural resource systems and power structural and technical systems.

Devon chose to donate the money after asking how FFA could fit into its Oklahoma public school science, technology, engineering and mathematics initiative. Whitney Danker, former state FFA president, will be the part-time project manager, working out the specific details to make sure the project meets all of Devon Energy’s and FFA’s expectations.

Congratulations to Oklahoma FFA and the FFA Foundation, specifically Kendall Brashears, FFA Foundation executive director, and special thanks to Alesha Leemaster and Christina Rehkop with Devon Energy.

National Technical Honor Society held Fall Leadership conference

Oklahoma National Technical Honor Society participated in leadership building exercises and promoted academic excellence at the ninth annual Fall Leadership Conference Nov. 13 at Moore Norman Technology Center. The theme was “Happy Birthday, NTHS.” Attendees celebrated the honor society’s 30th birthday. NTHS co-founder Allen Powell was an honored guest.

Students had the opportunity to interact with other members from high school and technology center chapters across the state. Kyle Eastham, Black Belt Performance, presented “Do What Black Belts Do.” Blake Whisenant, Express Pros, presented “Getting a Job, Keeping a Job,” and Suzanne Silk, Western Technology Center, presented “FISH.”

NTHS is the acknowledged leader in the recognition of outstanding student achievement in workforce education. For more information, visit

Great partnership continues

CareerTech Printing was recently awarded a bid from Oklahoma State University for printing office supply products, including stationery, envelopes, business cards and other common business paper products for the OSU System. CareerTech Printing will serve as the primary stationer for the university. The university wanted to establish a mutually beneficial preferred relationship with a supplier that can provide the system with market competitive pricing and satisfactory services and that is aligned with the university’s needs and goals. CareerTech Printing has been meeting these requirements for eight years as a licensed OSU printer, competing with several other printers who are licensed to provide printing services for the University. CareerTech Printing will be prominently featured in the University’s OK Corral eProcurement system and heavily marketed to all users as the preferred supplier for the OSU System statewide.

ACTE features Oklahoma CareerTech biosciences in fact sheet

In its September sector sheet on Biosciences, ACTE highlights Southern Oklahoma Technology Center’s Biotechnology Academy as a promising program in biosciences:

“The award-winning Biotechnology Academy at Southern Oklahoma Technology Center in Ardmore offers a rigorous and relevant curriculum for juniors and seniors in high school. Focusing on medical, agricultural, industrial and environmental disciplines, the academy teaches theory and brings it to life in its 4,000-square-foot laboratory and classroom space, preparing students for bioscience degree programs or for the biotechnology workforce. First-year students study the fundamentals, learn technical laboratory skills and regularly visit the nearby campus of the Noble Foundation, which conducts plant science research, for tours and hands-on workshops. Second-year students participate in capstone internships, working on projects with researchers at the Noble Foundation and the Oklahoma State University Institute for Agricultural Biosciences. Students have the opportunity to extend these projects into summer internships and earn college credit. ACT composite and science scores have increased since the academy was founded, and the vast majority of students go on to postsecondary education in STEM-related majors.”

In FY14, there were 11,000 enrollments in CareerTech’s Gateway To Technology, pre-engineering, biotechnology and biomedical science offerings. Courses include calculus, trigonometry, anatomy, physiology and physics. Since 2007, CareerTech has invested more than $5.5 million to increase STEM education, which is integrated throughout CareerTech offerings.

Digital course development update

The agency’s digital delivery project is gaining momentum. has almost 4,000 users and 700 courses. Plans are underway to establish a network of field contacts and offer instructors sample products and resources including Horticulture, Ag Safety, Personal Finance, Fundamentals of Nursing courses and more and self-training packets to help instructors as they create blended and digital learning opportunities. To find out more about the initiatives, read our newsletter at

Useful links

Oklahoma Horizon Schedule
State director’s job announcement

Schedule for the week

This schedule is subject to change without notice:

Senior staff meeting
Standards committee meeting
Leadership Stillwater

Morning chat
Data system update
IRQ divisional meeting
Administrative support meeting

OMES meeting



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