Page 13 - Scene Magazine 43-03 March 2018
P. 13

Education Scene
Courtroom to the Classroom – Career and Technical Education brings career exploration to life!
 The Calhoun Area Career Cen- ter (CACC) prides itself on providing quality Career and Technical Education (CTE) opportunities to students through- out Calhoun County.
With 20 programs housed inside the facility located on East Roosevelt Ave- nue in Battle Creek, each program uti- lizes state-of-the-art equipment to teach students the skills necessary to meet cur- rent industry standards in their specific course of study.
However, how might one develop a CTE program that does not utilize phys- ical equipment, per se, in their curricu- lum?
CACC instructor, Deirdre (Dede) Ford, recently received a statewide rec- ognition for her ingenuity and creativity in doing just that. The Michigan Associ- ation for Career and Technical Education (MIACTE) recognized Ford as the new teacher of the year during the Michigan CTE Conference.
According to the awards program, the MIACTE awards seek to promote excellence in career and technical edu- cation by recognizing individuals who have positively impacted students, made extraordinary contributions to the field, programs that exemplify the highest standards, and organizations that have conducted activities to promote and ex- pand career and technical education pro- grams.
In just her second year of teaching Criminal Justice to high school students, Ms. Ford, a retired Calhoun County Prosecutor, has used her professional experiences to develop a strong curric- ulum that keeps students engaged while exploring careers that are essential to our criminal justice system.
Co-workers, students and colleagues alike, attribute much of Dede’s success in the classroom to her preparedness, a trait that served her well in the court- room for more than 16 years.
Mae Dustin, a junior from Marshall High School, is one who speaks highly of Ms. Ford. Mae says that as a sopho- more, she knew she wanted to become a prosecuting attorney, so enrolling in the Criminal Justice course was a
natural fit. “Ms. Ford has had a great influence on me,” says Dustin. “She is a hard worker, very honest and straight forward. She makes me want to be bet- ter in life.”
Dustin adds, “Ms. Ford is very well experienced in the courtroom and she shares her personal experiences with us. We study cases that she prosecuted and meet people that were involved in the case.”
Last year, Ms. Ford had the brother of a victim come in and speak to the class. He was able to talk to the students about her professionalism in the courtroom as well as the caring and empathy she ex- hibited while communicating with their family. She culminated the study of the case by taking the students to the ceme- tery to pay their respects and leave flow- ers for the victim, probably one of the most unique field trip requests to date at the Career Center.
“Dede is the perfect CTE teacher be- cause she makes her lessons about real life,” said Kris Jenkins, asst. superinten- dent of CTE for the Calhoun Intermedi- ate School District. “Meeting a victim’s family and visiting his gravesite all to demonstrate that you must develop rela- tionships with people and that justice re- quires that we connect with the humanity of the victim are invaluable experiences for her students,” Jenkins continued. “Dede teaches that compassion, empa- thy and caring are the most important skills to excel in the field of criminal jus- tice. We are very lucky to have Dede on our teaching staff, and most importantly, the students are fortunate to have Dede as a teacher.”
To learn more about the CTE opportunities available to high school students throughout Calhoun County contact the Calhoun Area Career Center at (269) 968-2271 and schedule a visit.
BY TERESA OSBORNE, PR/Marketing Coordinator
      Serving the following school districts: Athens, Battle Creek, Bellevue, Harper Creek, Homer, Lakeview, Marshall, Olivet, Pennfield, Tekonsha, Union City, including private
and charter schools within the Calhoun Intermediate School District.
                                                             Career Pathways
Arts &
• Graphic Communications Technology
Manufacturing & Industrial Technology
• Automotive Service Technology • Aviation Exploration
• Collision Repair Technology
• Computer Aided Design/
Computer Aided Machining
• Construction Technology
• Power Equipment Technology
• Intro to Robotics & Engineering • Welding Technology
Natural Resources
and Agriscience
Management, Marketing, & Technology
• Computer Networking
• Computer Programming* • Culinary Arts/Hospitality
Health Sciences
• Health Careers Prep • Health Occupations
• 21st Century Health Careers
• Emergency Medical Technician
(EMT) – Basic
Human Services
• Education Academy • Early Childhood Education
• Law Enforcement/ Criminal Justice
• Cosmetology (This off-site program is for seniors only)
* NEW at CACC FALL 2018
475 East Roosevelt Ave. Battle Creek, MI 49017
fax 269-968-4344
          NEW FALL 2018 Computer Programming
 • Agriscience

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