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Director's Memo 2021-07-19

Monday, July 19, 2021

CareerTech essential to meet workforce needs

A qualified workforce is critical to the state’s economic well-being and will be vital to its recovery following the pandemic. Oklahoma CareerTech, which has long been a major component of Oklahoma’s economic engine, will play a starring role in this recovery.

Through a network of 399 PK-12 school districts, 29 technology center districts, 13 skills center sites and 32 adult basic education providers, the strengths of Oklahoma’s CareerTech System include accessibility and flexibility.

Through partnerships with business and industry, Oklahoma CareerTech has responded quickly to the state’s immediate workforce needs by providing customized career training in a wide range of industries, including health care, agriculture, aerospace and energy.

Read more in CareerTech State Director Marcie Mack’s guest column in The Journal Record.

Oklahoma instructors vie for million dollar prize

Three Oklahoma skilled trades instructors are among 61 finalists competing for a share of more than $1 million in cash in the Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Prize for Teaching Excellence.

Robbie Wise (aviation maintenance technology, Tulsa Technology Center), Jorge Huizar (agricultural mechanics, Hennessey Schools) and Coty Green (automotive technology, Chisholm Trail Technology Center) were chosen from 700 applicants. They are advancing to a second round of online competition, where they will share creative ideas about teaching practices. In October, three instructors will be named grand prize winners, and 15 will receive additional prizes.

“High school skilled trades teachers are heroes,” said Eric Smidt, owner and founder of Harbor Freight Tools. “Our teachers and their programs are an essential part of meeting the national challenge of educating the next generation of skilled trades workers.”

OEIP event focuses on automotive industry

CareerTech’s Oklahoma Education and Industry Partnerships’ last summer session will focus on the automotive industry. Industry panelists will discuss the need for automotive technicians, and educators will discuss pathways for technology center students after high school.

The July 26 event at Oklahoma City Community College will include a tour of Francis Tuttle Technology Center’s automotive program in the morning, and OCCC’s automotive program in the afternoon.

Panelists will include Jerry Cantrell, Bob Moore Cadillac; David Brunette, Hunter HD equipment and Eskridge Honda; Ed Pianalto, GM service development manager; and Paul Maggia, fixed ops director for Cooper Auto Group.

Counselors and instructors from technology centers and K-12 schools are invited to attend.

Tulsa Tech student wins mural contest

Tulsa Technology Center and Jenks High School student Hannah Brown created a mural that is displayed at Hillcrest Medical Center in Tulsa.

Brown, a Tulsa Tech Foundation of Web Design student, entered Hillcrest’s contest to create a mural to say thank you to its employees. She credits the class for helping her know how to make her design stand out.

Read more on the Greater Tulsa Reporter website.

Useful links

Follow us on Twitter at @okcareertech and find us on Facebook at OklahomaCareerTech and on Instagram at oklahomacareertech and read our blog, Oklahoma CareerTech Delivers. Find our podcast at

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

Art is not what you see, but what you make others see. -- Edgar Degas
Last Modified on May 15, 2023
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