Wood Co. Technical Center looking to bring enrollment back up

WTAP News @ 6 - Wood Co. Technical Center looking to bring enrollment back up
Published: Aug. 1, 2022 at 5:32 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - Jason Hughes is the new director of the Wood County Technical Center and Caperton Center.

Both hands on programs lost students during the pandemic.

Hughes is working on new plans to get more people back into the facilities.

“Traditionally, these programs have been kind of limited to juniors and seniors only,” says Hughes. “And most of our programs or teachers are wanting to expand that to sophomores and even freshmen.”

Expanding to students throughout high school isn’t the only area Hughes is looking to get children involved in CTE.

He’s working on relationships with high schools in Wood County.

“One of the first things I did was reach out to principals in my new role, and just start building those relationships working together for the good of CTE in our students,” says Hughes.

And getting students in middle and even elementary school interested in these programs.

“There is great support both from our state Department of Ed. And the United States Department of Ed. To get CTE more into the lower grades,” says Hughes. “Understanding that that’s where they’re going to get excited and want to be able to learn more and want to take the more advanced programs they do in high school.”

Hughes says that he wants students to learn the value of what these programs can provide.

From the fire and emergency management and electrical programs at the Caperton Center to collision repair, restaurant management and the new pre-cosmetology program being offered at the Wood County Technical Center.

“We want them to be prepared,” says Hughes. “Not only for career but college if that is their choice as well.”

The centers will be partnering with West Virginia University at Parkersburg on this effort.

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