The CTAE Connector

From the Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education

November 2021 • Preparing Today for Tomorrow's Workforce

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Soaring Into Second Quarter!

In October, the Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education welcomed Program Specialist Michael Butler to our staff. Read the article below to learn more about him and all he brings to his new role in the district.

We also celebrated with Danielle "DeeDee" Johnson as she was selected as the new principal for Kirkland Ranch Academy of Innovation (opening August 2022), Pasco's newest technical high school. Follow the journey on Facebook at

Our team is collaborating on a number of projects, including:

• "Pasco Pathways" school choice expos

• CTAE-focused Early Release Day professional development

• "CTE 101" learning for administrators

• Career Advisory Council general membership meeting

• College & Career Virtual Expo

• Comprehensive Local Needs Assessment

• FLDOE Desk Audit

• ICT Essentials Digital Tools implementation and facilitation

We will soon begin Program Advisements as we partner with high school and middle school administrative teams to plan their CTE course offerings for the 2022-2023 school year.

As always, we are "Preparing Today for Tomorrow's Workforce" and we appreciate your support of our students and schools!

Please feel free to contact us at 813-794-2204, join us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @PascoCTE!

Stay safe, keep it simple and be well,

Lori Romano, Ph.D.

Director, Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education

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Welcome to CTAE, Mr. Butler!

We're pleased to welcome Michael Butler to our team!

Here's what he shared in his introductory email to CTAE teachers:

"I graduated from Saint Leo University earning my degree in Business Administration. I am certified in Business Education and I hold a master's degree in educational leadership. Marchman Technical College was my home for the past seven years. At MTC I taught mathematics in the adult education program. I had the opportunity to work with the CTAE instructors at MTC in many different roles. I learned the complexity and the necessity of the CTAE programs. I have seen, first-hand, how our CTAE programs change our students' lives and have learned how hard the instructors work to make this a reality.

"Prior to my career change into education, I worked in retail management for 10 years as a pharmacy manager, district trainer, hiring manager, and inventory manager to name a few. As a teen and through college, I worked in various trades learning the skills of single-family home construction, aluminum construction, electrical, automotive repair, marine repair, HVAC, plumbing, culinary, online advertising, web development, pharmacy technician, and employee recruitment and other CTE related fields.

"I have always had a passion for CTE. I would like to say thank you for all you already have done and the opportunities you have provided for your students. I will be visiting all the schools in the next quarter and look forward to meeting and learning about you."

We want to hear from you!

• Please share information about your program that you would like considered for the CTE monthly newsletter (photos, awards, events, certifications, etc.).

• Don't forget that you can email Pam Willoughby ( with news and photos you want posted on our social media platforms at any time throughout the month.

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Quick Takes

• Hudson High School's JROTC was just chosen to present the colors at the Tampa Bay Lightning game on January 15th, 2022!

• Wiregrass Ranch High School's Culinary Arts program is brainstorming ideas for fundraisers. It's always fun to see what Chef Wilson Rodriguez and his students are cooking up!

GMS Career Clusters: The Cereal!

Gulf Middle School students in the Orientation to Career Clusters course designed cereal boxes to display the career cluster they researched. The finished products provided the information about specific careers on the sides. Here's what they shared:

On Front of the box: Your Name/Period/Name of Cluster

On the Back of the box: Job description, Education requirements, Certifications, Special

qualities or skills.

On one side of the box: Salary range, Employers, Job outlook/growth.

On one side of the box: What did you learn about this job? Why did you choose this job? Cite your sources.

- Submitted by Scott Simpson

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WKTHS & MTC Designers Compete in AmSkills Branding Contest

It's that time again!

Check out these incredible student designs for our annual Branding Design Contest! Student members are tasked with creating a cohesive design package to represent our theme for the year. Voting closes on November 8 - cast your vote for your favorite!

Check out all the designs here:

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WRHS Business Students Have Fun with 4 Ps of Marketing

WRHS Business Entrepreneurial Principles students in Ms. Pashnyak's class had fun applying the 4 Ps of Marketing (product, price, place, and promotion). Ms. Pashnyak, who grew up in Ukraine, shared her favorite fast food recipe - piroshki, which are small baked or fried hand pies with different fillings, similar to empanadas. The students were then challenged to brainstorm a catchy name and design a marketing mix for the piroshki business.

The winning team is featured in the photo below:
L-R: Jay Vasquez, Riddyk Ayan, and Chase Gilligan (Kat Claudio is not shown.)
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River Ridge and Anclote Team Up for Learning

River Ridge High School Business Academy students and Mr. Mallo spent the Day at Anclote High School working with Mr. Yocum and AmSkills. Our students learned about Careers in Manufacturing, hands-on training, and the different job placements available. This was an awesome opportunity for both high schools to come together to learn from each other.

- submitted by Chad Mallo

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Future Educators Share Lessons

River Ridge High School students in the New Teacher Academy were able to practice their skills as part of their internship class. It was nice to be face-to-face in classrooms again!

- submitted by Beth Hess

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LOLHS Bakes Up Fall Treats

The Land O' Lakes High School Academy of Culinary Arts is hosting its 11th Annual Fall Bake Sale. This popular fundraiser offers eight delicious desserts - from pies to cakes, crisps to cobblers, and more! See the graphic below to learn more and order your homemade items before November 5th.

- submitted by Chef Jeremy Blythe

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WRHS Students Learn Culinary Skills

Aspiring chefs in Wilson Rodrigez' Culinary classes at Wiregrass Ranch High School have been busy! In a recent kitchen session, all 35 students were engaged in making pasta (see photo below). Knife skills and cutting vegetables were the next skills students mastered as they continued to learn the basics.
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Knights Take on Roboticon

The River Ridge High School robotics team recently competed at Roboticon in Tampa. At Roboticon, we got a lot of chances to test out the robot we built last year against other teams. While we ran into some issues, we were able to have most of them fixed by the end of the competition, so we left with a better robot then we entered with. Throughout the event we got to interact with a lot of local teams, and ended up leaving with the “Awesome Pit Award” for having the best pit setup for repairing and modifying our robot between matches.

- submitted by Xander Sore, RRHS Engineering student director of media and marketing

WKTHS Cybersecurity

On Friday 10/15 we had a guest speaker from Cisco Systems. Jeremy Bresley is a Systems Engineer for one of the largest and most dominant technology industry leaders. Cisco systems products permeate throughout the industry and around the world. Jeremy discussed his job duties, interesting challenges, education, certifications and helped students visualize that they too can achieve a career like his.

- Submitted by Scott Tumelty

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Sharing Stories = ESOL Learning Gains!

Role playing, drama, drawing, testing, and teaching were all a part of weeks 5-8 at the Adult ESOL program at Wesley Chapel High. Students are currently engaged in "Show and Tell" every Monday. This has been a fun way of learning about each other's backgrounds. As their teacher always says, "The best way to learn is to teach." Thus, students had to create their own study material to teach their classmates for their test. This lesson paid off in huge dividends as 11 students scored 100% on their test!

The adult learners had many opportunities to think, pair, and share with a lesson on "descriptions of people". Students tested their art skills by drawing pictures strictly based on their partner's description. In week 8, ESOL classes started a unit on "What Do You Do?" This unit involves interviewing faculty and staff about job duties, and it will culminate with our first ever Job Fair, hosted by former ESOL students. Stay tuned!

- Submitted by Rebecca Sandy, ESOL Instructor

Ms. Sandy Recognized as MTC Teacher of the Year

Marchman Technical College Assistant Director Mr. Brochu presented Ms. Rebecca Stanley, with a bouquet of balloons to celebrate Pasco Adult Education's first-ever Teacher of the Year recognition. Ms. Sandy does an amazing job with her ESOL students. They absolutely love her! Congratulations Ms. Sandy! Way to Go!
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Meet Program Coordinator Pam Willoughby

When did you begin working for the Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education?

July 2020

What was your position and where did you work before joining CTAE?

Pasco eSchool Assistant Principal (2015-2020)

What's your favorite thing about working for CTAE?

The team! From administrators to teachers to our district office CTAE team: we are collaborating to build better programs, more options and greater supports for students in Career, Technical and Adult Education. It's fulfilling work and there are so many opportunities to share the stories of success!

Where did you grow up?

Dennis, Massachusetts - on Cape Cod

Which teacher inspired you most when you were growing up?

Robert Lavery and Allan Pearson were my high school art teachers. They supported all my creative work and encouraged me to try a variety of mediums. When my parents decided to move to Florida at the end of my senior year, they were the ones who told me about Ringling, which set the stage for my entire graphic design career and beyond.

Where did you attend college or post-secondary education?

Ringling College of Art + Design (Sarasota) and Saint Leo University

What do you like to do in your free time?

Adventure with my husband; spend time with our son and his wife; lettering and drawing in my planner/journal

Anything else you'd like to share with the CTAE community?

I've painted numerous murals at schools and businesses throughout Pasco, including Wesley Chapel High School, Double Branch Elementary School, West Zephyrhills Elementary School, Cotee River Elementary School, New River Elementary School and Bayonet Point Middle School. It's fun to paint BIG and make an impact on spaces!

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