Photos, videos and story by Jo Mathis/AAPS District News
Huron High School junior Alex Kotlyar thinks all students should take a business course to see if that’s a good direction to take in college.
Cosmetology student Karla Salazar feels great knowing she’ll have a marketable skill when she graduates from Huron next year.
And Community High School student Jane Burns wants all AAPS students to know about the Health Science & Technology program that has helped her consider a career in pre-med.
All three were happy Thursday night to talk to prospective students and their parents at the annual AAPS Career and Technical Education Career Fair at Huron High School.
Titled “Fitting the Pieces Together for Career Success,” the evening gave students and parents the chance to talk with representatives from the apprentice/skilled trades; speak with Washtenaw Community College admission representatives and professionals in the Ann Arbor community; and tour the labs.
Marybeth Koski of the U.S. Department of Labor in Detroit is a Huron High School graduate who was back on home turf Thursday night telling students about the benefits of learning a skilled trade while still in high school.
“The great thing about apprenticeship programs is they are for the kids that are not necessarily going to go to a four-year college, either because their interests don’t lie that way or because they’re tactile learners as opposed to book learners,” she said. “We have a lot of occupations—carpentry, auto mechanic, electrician, plumbers, pipefitters. You name it, we probably have it or are about to get it. It’s a great situation basically because lot of those folks are aging out of the workforce, and there are opportunities available for everyone.”
AAPS Career and Technical Education (CTE) trains students for a range of skilled, high-demand careers that pay well. The career clusters include:
- Auto Service Technology
- Business Administration and Management
- Construction Trades / Homebuilding
- Homebuilding Application
- Cosmetology Application
- Culinary and Hospitality
- Digital / MultiMedia / Web Page Design
- Finance / Accounting
- Health Sciences
- Marketing Sales & Services and Entrepreneurship
The CTE career pathway is an exciting way for students to transition from school into a bright, productive future, said CTE Department Chair Diane Stocker-Bendersky.
“It has the potential to shape the future of every student in a most spectacular way through its hands-on, real-world learning approach that further enriches each student’s overall learning experience,” she said.
Nooshin Sobhani said she was grateful that AAPS held the Career Night so she could learn about the many options available to her daughter, a Pioneer junior.
“I’ve been just amazed coming and seeing different people; meeting new people; and exploring different things,” she said.
Lynn Boland was a nurse for 18 years before returning to Huron High School in 2008 to lead the Health Sciences Program. The program accepts 50 seniors who plan to one day enter the health field in such areas as pre-med, nursing, physical therapy, pharmacy, dentistry, veterinary medicine, and more.
“Health care is one of the largest, fasted growing fields,” said Boland. “There is a ton of job security.”
The Health Science Program offers more than 200 mentors and placements the students can choose from during the second semester, when they spend volunteer hours at local hospitals learning about six different health care fields.
“It’s a really great program,” said Jane Burns, who hopes to be a doctor one day, “and it really helped me figure out what I want to do in my future.”
CTE classes are available to all AAPS students, although not all buildings offer the same classes. Students who complete a Career and Technical Education class earn high school credit and possible college credit at Washtenaw Community College. Direct credit with Eastern Michigan University is offered for the engineering courses.
Marilyn Suter leads the culinary arts program, and says the classes are practical for all students because whether or not they’ll make a career of it, they will always have to eat: