Oklahoman to Lead National CareerTech Association
STILLWATER, Okla. -- Douglas R. Major, superintendent/CEO of Meridian Technology Center, was sworn in July 1 as president of the Association of Career and Technical Education.
With more than 24,000 members, ACTE is the largest professional organization in the world dedicated to career and technical education.
As ACTE president, Major will lead the ACTE board of directors and promote the value of career and technical education at the national and local levels.
“CTE prepares students to be college- and career-ready by providing academic skills, employability skills and technical, job-specific skills,” he said. “At its core, CTE is about training a skilled workforce that allows individuals to obtain skills for in-demand careers which lead to economic development.”
He added that CTE continues to make an impact on the workforce.
“Nationwide we are seeing employment trends that value having industry certifications and hands-on experience,” he said. “Students in CTE programs spend their days working in both the classroom to learn the theoretical framework of an industry, as well as time working in lab settings gaining practical, real-world experience. Many times, when they complete their career training program they have an industry certification and college credit.”
A recent study by the Center on Education and Workforce Development at Georgetown University projected that by 2018 the U.S. economy will create nearly 47 million jobs. Nearly two-thirds of those jobs will not require a college degree, but will instead be filled by employees with an associate degree or industry certification, the researchers said.
Additionally, a recent Rutgers University study indicated that of the 3.7 million job openings across the country, many of them require either an associate degree or technical certifications. This coincides with the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ projection that out of the top occupations between now and 2020, only two of them will require a four-year college degree.
“It’s proven that career and technical education works,” Major said. “As president of ACTE, I look forward to sharing the success stories of our students and the economic impact that our system has on industry clients and the workforce.”
Major’s career in education began in 1985 after he completed a bachelor’s degree in agriculture education at Oklahoma State University. He taught for two years at Anadarko High School before joining the technology center system as an administrative intern at Meridian Technology Center. For 13 years he worked in various administrative capacities at the school. During his tenure at Meridian Technology Center, he completed a master’s degree and a doctorate at OSU.
In 2000, Major became superintendent/CEO of Pioneer Technology Center in Ponca City. In November 2008, he returned to Meridian Technology Center as superintendent.
Major has served in numerous national, state and local positions. Former Oklahoma Gov. Brad Henry appointed him to the Oklahoma Employment Security Commission. He is past president of the National Council of Local Administrators and is active in the Oklahoma Council of Local Administrators. In addition, Major has served OkACTE and ACTE in several leadership roles.
He is a graduate of Leadership Oklahoma class XXII. In 2012, The Journal Record honored Major as one of Oklahoma’s Most Admired CEOs.