Students work on a project in a Construction class at REC

It’s long been known that Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs provide students a solid foundation in various trades by offering in-depth, hands-on training focused on the skills they need to be successful when pursuing a career in that field.

That said, CTE programs are often viewed as a low-level program for students who “can’t cut it” in a traditional high school setting. With advances in the STEM fields and the development of CTE programs to stay current with industry trends, modern Career and Technical Education programs are anything but “low level”.

In fact, Questar III’s CTE programs offer dozens of professional certifications to students often not achieved until during or after college. Students who earn these certifications demonstrate advanced training in their field, something potential employers value when screening candidates.

CTE programs prepare students for skilled, high-demand careers in a variety of trade areas.  Industry recognized credential and articulation agreements with colleges demonstrate the rigor of the content covered and highlight the advantages to going to a CTE program.   Due to these advantages, CTE programs are often becoming programs of choice for high school students focused on a specific area of interest.  It is also worth noting that these trade jobs such as construction, welding, or HVAC, have a higher starting salary and are in more demand than many entry-level positions requiring a bachelor’s.

A student welds at CGEC

Through our various programs, students have the opportunity to earn well over 30 certifications or licenses, ranging from New York State Certified Nurse Assistant or Cosmetology License, NYS Security Guard License, and ServSafe Food Safety certification, to The Automotive Service Excellence Maintenance & Light Repair and CISCO CCENT certification in Information Technology.

These certifications prove not only the value in pursuing a CTE program, but also their relevance to the fields they represent. The process to be certified to award these licenses and certifications is recurring – Questar III must demonstrate on a regular basis that our programs continue to meet the requirements for certification.

We would not be able to offer such in-depth learning opportunities for our students if not for the great level of support we receive from local businesses, industries, colleges, and the community.

Consultant Committees meet at CGEC in Hudson annually.

Business partners collaborate with us in a number of ways to continually keep our programs on the cutting edge of their respective industries.  They host students for visits and internships, present to students in class, and serve on our consultant committees.  By advising on the latest trends, technologies, and techniques our students will need to know to be competitive in their fields, the consultant committees help us prepare students for those industry jobs of tomorrow – whether they begin looking for work right out of high school or if they choose to attend college first.

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