By Team iCEV on August 14, 2017 at 3:32 PM
The requirements to enter the workforce are changing, and Career and Technical Education (CTE) has adapted to ensure students are ready for new and emerging career fields. As educators seek to prepare students with 21st-century skills to enter the modern workforce, CTE is quickly adapting to meet their needs.
One way CTE programs are evolving to meet new industry demands is by offering industry certifications. Schools, educators, parents and even legislators are quickly realizing the impact certifications have on a student’s future beyond the classroom. “I see a lot of high schools throughout the state and throughout the country moving in this direction,” says Patrick Smith, CTE Educator, King City High School. “Because it provides evidence for these students and I think it’s going to connect a bridge between industry and education, which is outstanding.”
Certifications open doors to employment opportunities, provide validation of a student’s qualifications and often result in higher income earnings overall. For example, a study in California showed that individuals increased their average wage by 41.8% a year after becoming certified.
Introducing certifications into a program can seem overwhelming, especially for smaller districts which face limited resources and the need to provide relevant instruction. As a result, 41 percent of school districts do not offer certification opportunities within their CTE classes according to a survey commissioned by CEV Multimedia.
The primary challenge when integrating industry certifications into existing CTE programs is curriculum-based. Because students are required to master general K-12 education standards in addition to any technical skills offered by CTE programs, it can be difficult to fit certifications into an already strenuous workload. Another challenge is the speed with which certifications are amended. Many certifications, particularly those in technology fields, need to be updated year to year to evolve with industry demands. Finally, districts typically lack the necessary connections within their communities or surrounding colleges in order to establish a certification program themselves.
A Cost-Effective Solution
The same advancements in technology that have made CTE so invaluable can also provide answers to the challenges programs may be experiencing. Online learning and CTE content solutions like the iCEV platform by CEV Multimedia can be the way forward in the 21st century.
Through the iCEV platform, educators have access to all-inclusive CTE curriculum with the ability to easily integrate iCEV powered certifications as a result of partnering with nationally recognized industry experts, CEV Multimedia tests for certifications which align with both established curriculum standards and the needs of employers.
Since certifications powered by iCEV are built directly into the platform, implementation is seamless for educators like Debbie Benson, a CTE teacher at King City High School. “The implementation of the certifications was an easy transition. It just fit right into all of my courses. I could find something that fit in with each one.”
Because iCEV’s certification and curriculum content is delivered online, it is always adapting to meet changing industry demands. “iCEV Is constantly updating the curriculum and units of study to reflect what’s going on in Career and Technical Education, which is hugely advantageous for our teachers,” says Jennifer Edenfield, Director of Student Advancement, Bastrop ISD.
Empower Your CTE Program with Certifications
Industry certifications designed to move students in careers more quickly are increasing in popularity because they help improve the academic success of students of all backgrounds. A study found that high school students who took at least one technology course and at least one industry certification exam displayed better attendance and higher grade point averages than similar students who did not take any technology courses or exams.
Technology solutions like iCEV enable school districts to overcome obstacles and empower their students’ futures through robust certification programs.