BAYTOWN – Beautifully arranged bamboo plants, created by students from the Stuart Career Technical High School Floral Design program, adorned tables for the November 5th Gulf Coast CTE Association’s monthly meeting and luncheon. Students from the Culinary Arts program prepared a spread fit for an avid lover of Chinese food. CTE administrators from Alvin to Waller ISD and everywhere in between dined on a culinary feast of egg rolls, crab wontons, fried rice, beef and broccoli and orange chicken in traditional Chinese takeout boxes. Culinary Arts teacher, Chef Kylie Sobczak, was extremely proud of her students.
“Our students have worked hard over the past few days to prepare meals we hope that you all will enjoy,” she said. “Chinese food is a staple in the U.S. and we are so excited for you to experience the students’ cooking skills on National Chinese Takeout Day.”
Dr. Cap Roder, SCTHS principal proudly boasted about his students, “All of these students that prepared today’s menu (Chef 313) will finish their 41-hour dual-credit certification with Lee College this May,” he said. “Some of them are steps away from receiving their degree!”
Dr. Demetrius McCall, Deputy Superintendent, introduced district and campus administrators and welcomed guests to the district.
“We are truly serious about our mission on growing giants in our district by providing them opportunities to be successful beyond their high school years,” he said. “Dr. O’Brien has made it very clear that he wants our students to have a diploma in one hand and something else in the other. Dual credit hours, certificate, associate degree, interview skills; something else to assist them on their journey to success.”
The organization and its 32-member districts meet monthly to network, discuss CTE issues on the horizon and share ideas on how to improve the profession. Immediate Past President Renea Dillon has extensive experience in the CTE field. Dillon was the former CTE Director for the district.
“Each of you voted and chose Dr. O’Brien as your ‘Gulf Coast CTE Champion,’” she said. “He is a former CTE marketing teacher and has always cared so much about the success of this program.”
She followed up, “He really invested a lot to ensure we [GCCISD] had exactly what we needed and that we had everything we wanted to build here. This was the easiest job of my life. No matter what it was, he made it happen.”
Dr. O’Brien quietly smiled from the background.
“I am truly humbled to be honored in this way,” he said. “I am entering my ninth year in Goose Creek and when I got here, the CTE budget was underfunded, in my opinion. When you get your community involved, your program will be successful.”
O’Brien discussed the construction phases that have taken place in the building as well as what is planned for the future.
“We have a few more phases to go that will double the student population to 950 P-Tech students.”
For more information on GCCTE, visit their website at: www.gulfcoastcte.com.