The CTAE Connector

From the Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education

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January 2023 • Preparing Today for Tomorrow's Workforce

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Second Semester Begins!

First semester finished strong with approximately 1200 middle school CTE students earning Digital Tools certifications!

As teacher Katherine Mandelberg shared:

"Students were working super hard during Semester 1 through all the hurricane and testing setbacks. By the end of the semester Computer Applications in Business 1 students had great success. 75 students passed the CIW Word Essentials Certification Exam and 80 passed the CIW Multimedia Essentials Certification Exam. Having one DIT class, students did awesome with 11 passing the Microsoft PowerPoint 2016 Certification Exam. What a bunch of hard-working students we have here at Charles S. Rushe Middle. I am so proud of them all."

As our students continue into second semester, they are preparing for industry certification exams by mastering standards through project-based learning and real-world experiences.

Our team is involved in the collaborative development of the Pasco/Hernando Local College Access Network (LCAN). We are working with K-12 and postsecondary education, business, government, non-profit and philanthropy partners. This coalition is committed to building and expanding programs, services and resources that increase college readiness, participation, and completion rates within our community.

We are also excited to welcome Jess Kortum, Learning Design Specialist, to the district Career, Technical and Adult Education team. Jess will be supporting CTE teachers in the areas of curriculum, resources, classroom management, and more.

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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Pine View Middle Agriculture Students Shine

Pine View Middle School FFA students competed in the FFA Sub-District Contest, and placed very well! We look forward to seeing them compete at the district level and beyond!

• 1st place Extemporaneous Public Speaking: Nick Campbell
• 1st place Creed Speaking: Meilana Gingras
• 1st place Opening and Closing Ceremonies: PVMS Team
• 2nd place Prepared Public Speaking: Nick Campbell

- submitted by Audra Skinner

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Wildcat Wins Ringling Scholarship

Congratulations to Aliyah Rodriguez Sanchez, from Wesley Chapel High School on her acceptance to Ringling College of Art and Design's prestigious Film program! Ringling awarded her a $56,000 scholarship to attend the Sarasota-based institution. Aliyah is the senior news producer in WCHS' Academy of Digital Video Technology.

- submitted by Stephanie Bertig

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WRHS Business Bulls Earn Certifications

Congratulations to Paola Arias Moreno, Daniel Mekhail, Chloe Troupe and Niles Williams, who earned their Entrepreneurship and Small Business industry certification just before winter break! These four were the first of many Business Entrepreneurial Principles students at Wiregrass Ranch High School to pass the ESB exam.

- submitted by Tatyana Pashnyak

Weightman Business Students Learn Sweet Skills

Students in the Business and Coding classes at Thomas E. Weightman Middle School collaborated to showcase their learning with a sweet business idea.

Before break all classes came together to be a competitive corporation. Each class helped with different aspects of the business and understood the whole business model of, "Checks for Candy Canes." Students learned how to create their own signature, write a check, create a customer service survey, deliver with customer service, receive customer feedback from staff, cash a check, recruit return customers and create an invoice.

- submitted by Jenna Eyers

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Student Spotlight

We recently had an inspirational young man complete our Underage GED Program. His name is Vladyslav Rukas and he is from Ukraine. He was there when the war began and his home town was under fire and being destroyed, including his school. He had the opportunity to flee the war abruptly but would have to come to the US without his parents. He came and stayed with family here while completing our program. He is a dedicated young man, who rode his bike to class every day, rain or shine, and worked hard in the classroom. While completing our program, he learned his parents would be joining him here and living in Tampa. Under the circumstances, he took the GED Ready tests in hopes of finishing early so he could start college after reuniting with his parents in Tampa. He passed all four Ready tests and was approved for the Underage Waiver.

We are extremely proud of this young man. He was abruptly uprooted from his life to move to a foreign country, and separated from his parents in the process. But he maintained a positive attitude and concentrated on achieving his goals. He remains focused on his goal to get his GED and go to a college where he can play soccer while preparing for a career in Information Technology. We are very happy for him and wish him the best.

- submitted by Kathy Carreno

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An Epic Fall Semester

The Adult ESOL classes at Wesley Chapel concluded 2022 with hope, excitement, and an awesomeness that can only be described as "epic". Both day classes participated in the Angel Tree sponsorship at Wesley Chapel Elementary. Santa Carlos (from Brazil) accompanied by several classmates delivered clothes, shoes, games, and toys to the school on December 13th.

On December 15th, students brought down the house with a fun and touching holiday presentation, "Miracle in Wesley Chapel". After the drama, Rebecca presented two awards- "Most Improved Speaker" to Santa #2, Rotsen Martinez, and the ultimate "Student of the Semester" to Maloryk Sanabria.

Friday, December 16th, was a memorable and rewarding experience as Santa Carlos, his elves and some carolers brought joy, songs, festivity, and some gifts to the teachers and pre-schoolers at the Little Pioneers Day Care.

We're excited to see what 2023 will bring!

- submitted by teacher Rebecca Sandy

We want to hear from you!

• Please share information about your program that you would like considered for the CTAE 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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