Seniors Devin Kersey of Bradley Central High School and Meeri Shin of Walker Valley High School were chosen for this distinction.
Each student gave a short speech highlighting their experience in the CTE program.
Kersey said the CTE classes gave him skills such as public speaking that will be beneficial in his career in addition to knowledge of his field.
“Regardless of what CTE class you take you can always expect to do hands-on work. CTE classes provide a realistic approach to those presented in the professional world,” Kersey said.
He said it gives “a realistic feel” and a better understanding of the content being studied.
In the CTE program at Bradley, Kersey said he found invidualized education. He said this helps students develop reasons for pursuing their chosen field.
“It’s because of this that many CTE classes influence a student in the decision process of where to go to college, trade school or which particular branch of the military,” Kersey said.
Shin said her participation in the CTE program and the Future Business Leaders of America chapter have helped her develop her strengths.
“I would not trade those experiences (with FBLA this past year) for anything,” Shin said “Because of FBLA, next year I will be able to attend the University of California at Berkeley for free.”
She said her CTE teachers have made her high school years the best they could be.
Both students also said the CTE program is where they made their closest friends.
“They [teachers] have pushed me to strive for my best in all my endeavors,” Shin said. “They taught me to lead not just with my words but with my actions, and through it, I have met my best friends.”
Kersey said the CTE program provides opportunities to work closely with diverse groups of people.
“Looking back on my memories from high school, I came to the realization that many of them took place in [my CTE classes],” Kersey said.
Participation in the various career-focused clubs also enhanced his experience, he said.
“The lessons that I and everyone else here have learned are more valuable than words can describe,” Kersey said.
He thanked the teachers for their work.
“It is because of you that we as students can escape the conventional classroom and realize exactly what profession the Lord has called us into,” Kersey said.
Also during the event, numerous students received recognition for being state winners or receiving industry certifications.
“All of you are here tonight because you kept going, and you did not back down from a challenge,” CTE director Arlette Robinson said. “I am so very, very proud of you. We want to celebrate what you have done.”
Students placed in state competitions for the following organizations: HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America), Skills USA, Future Business Leaders of America, FFA (agriculture), DECA (marketing), ProStart and the Technology Student Association.
Certification recognition was given for Certified Nursing Assistant, First Responder, American Digital Design Association, Microsoft Office Specialist, Pork Quality Assurance, ProStart, American Welding Society and National Institute for Metal Working Skills.