For four decades, the Washington County Career Center has been changing students lives, and the community.
More than 200 high school age students attend the career center enrolled in dozens of technical and academic programs. Additionally, there are dozens of programs offered to hundreds of adults through the center's adult technical training.
The center was formed after the Ohio legislature passed the Vocational Education Act back in 1963. That bill mandated that each school district in the state offer vocational education. Local districts put their resources together and the Washington County Career Center was formed.
Some students graduating from the career center may go on to higher education, others will go directly to work thanks to the skills they've learned at the center. The career center works in partnership with local industry and businesses in the community in an effort to offer training that's needed for workers who live here and want to stay here.
The career center has shown over the years it will adjust courses to fit economic trends. Recent activity in the oil and gas sector has resulted in new courses being offered such as heavy equipment operation and commercial driving.
For many, the career center is a lifeline. In recent years, many workers found themselves without work during the most recent economic downturn. But the career center is there to offer training in new skills which is putting many local residents back to work.
In addition to providing education and training, the career center has provided much in the way of community contributions through its students and programs. Career center personnel have built dozens of homes, not to mention a variety of community projects such as electrical work for lighting at the Frontier football field; building dugouts for Warren Elementary; helping to wire the electricity in Washington County Habitat for Humanity homes; constructing and wiring holiday lighting displays; and painting a local DARE car. That's just a sampling of the types of projects career center students are involved in every day.
Congratulations to the Washington County Career Center for 40 years of service and education.