Olean, NY – February 1, 2021 – Cattaraugus-Allegany BOCES (CA BOCES) has announced a new program, with accompanying website, to help middle and high school students explore career options in technical fields – CTE Career Exploration.
The new program and website provide a comprehensive look at career exploration and, with support of their home school guidance counselor, will allow students to take an interest assessment, explore career clusters, and view a variety of videos pertaining to program options at CA BOCES CTE Centers in Belmont, Ellicottville, and Olean.
CA BOCES Career and Technical Education (CTE) Outreach Coordinator, Thomasine Graf, said that the program idea was a direct result of closures due to COVID-19. “In a normal year, students are able to visit our centers, speak to our instructors, and get a good feel for what each of our CTE programs looks like – COVID-19 changed that,” she said. “CTE Career Exploration allows students to explore career options and confidently decide if they want to embark on a CTE education as a part of their high school experience without physically entering a center or classroom.”
In addition to the career exploration assessments, students will also have access to a professional discussion board with local professionals in the career fields associated with their preferences. “We are so fortunate to have both CTE alumni and volunteers from local community organizations, in a variety of fields, ready and willing to speak with our youth,” Graf said. “These conversations will be invaluable to students as they decide the potential paths they may want to pursue. We are grateful to both Dream It Do It and the Greater Olean Area Chamber of Commerce for collaborating with us in gathering our local professionals for this venture.”
Launched last week for sophomores at local school districts, participation will begin in the near future. When in-person tours resume, the website will be used for a virtual experience for students unable to visit the CTE centers.