Aligning CTSOs with CTE Career Clusters

Are you looking for an engaging way to have students further explore career skills and concepts? Look no further than a Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO). A CTSO is an extracurricular student group that meets to participate in activities, events and competitions specific to a CTE pathway.

CTSOs are an essential component of CTE today. ACTE currently recognizes eight CTSOs for secondary students, each catering to a different career cluster. Studies have shown, students who participate in CTSOs organizations show higher levels of motivation, academic engagement and career aspirations. The article below highlights all eight CTSOs for secondary students and which career cluster they are associated with. 

CTSO

Career Clusters

Business Professionals of America (BPA)

- Business Management & Administration
- Finance
- Information Technology

DECA

- Business Management & Administration
- Finance
- Hospitality & Tourism
- Marketing

Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA)

- Education & Training
- Hospitality & Tourism
- Human Services

Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA)

- Business Management & Administration
- Finance
- Information Technology
- Marketing

HOSA- Future Health Professionals

- Health Science
- Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics

National FFA Organization

-  Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources

Skills USA

- Architectural Drafting
- Arts, A/V Production & Communications
- Health Science
- Hospitality & Tourism
- Human Services
- Information Technology
- Law, Public Safety, Corrections & Security
- Manufacturing
- Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics
- Transportation, Distribution & Logistics

Technology Student Association (TSA)

- Information Technology
- Manufacturing
- Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics

 

CTSOs are an essential component of a high-performing CTE program. While each CTSO focuses on different career fields, all CTSOs provide students with the opportunity for personal development and employability skills. Additionally, most CTSOs offer regional and national competitive events for students to demonstrate their mastery of a skill in real-life scenarios. These competitions also promote student networking with like-minded peers and potential mentors in their desired field. Finally, CTSOs support leadership development and the opportunity to hold leadership positions at the local, state and national levels.

CTSOs serve an important role in CTE as they further develop students beyond what they can learn in the classroom. To learn more about CTSOs,  stay tuned for our next blog in this series in starting a CTSO.        

 

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