By Todd Martin
The Killeen ISD Career Center awarded 750 career-level certifications to students this past school year.
During the Career and Technical Education Awards night May 17 many students walked across the stage multiple times and received numerous honors.
Ian Drake earned this year 26 automotive certifications. Ivan Vilchez and Alex DeAvila each earned 12.
Deandre Johnson earned two certifications and recognitions as the state-level Skills USA vice president as well as National Technical Honor Society.
"It means a lot," Johnson said the night of the awards ceremony. "It's been a goal of mine and the work is paying off. I've learned to bring out the best in myself, to be true to my morals and values and to give back to the community."
The new Ellison High School graduate is headed to the University of Texas to study architecture.
Nicole Crandall, now a Harker Heights High School graduate, earned a veterinary medical applications certification and completed clinical time. She expected to receive word of another certification.
"I'm glad it's over, but I'm sad, too," she said. "I enjoyed my classmates and learning to be a veterinarian. I was in a clinic with a doctor thinking this is real."
Crandall said she embraced the opportunity at the Career Center to step into the world of veterinary medicine to see if it might be right for her. "It was a challenge to see if I can do this," she said, "to see if I can be a doctor."
National Technical Honor Society stoles went to the following students:
Tyquan Abson, Tashonna Banks, Yasmine Garcia, Noah Gardner, Sydney James, Deandre Johnson, Dajana Kasmi, Amber McCalister, Arthur Moebius, David Moralles, Cameron Nicole, Hailey Ortiz, Camarin Palacios, Zoe Pearson, Tyrin Prichett, Tanjala Smith, Dashyra Starling, Jesenia Tobias and Cassandra Walker
In April, U.S. Congressman John Carter awarded Harker Heights High School junior Bailey Greene and Shoemaker High School senior Tyrin Prichett, both students in the Killeen ISD Career Center, with Congressional Awards for outstanding performance in CTE.
The congressman, whose district includes the Fort Hood area, pointed out the changing perceptions of Career and Technical Education.
"It's a huge honor to represent KISD and CTE, really nationwide," said Prichett, who was part of the radio broadcasting program at the Career Center. Now a Shoemaker graduate, he said he is interested in politics and journalism. He hosted a radio program on the school district's MY 95.1 FM radio station.
"I'm getting the skills I need," said Greene, part of the Career Center's automotive technology sequence. He pointed out that he is also part of the competitive Skills USA group that focuses on personal skills valued in the workplace.
Working on vehicles, knowing he aspires to help design more efficient engines, he said, "there is a sense I'm doing what needs to be done."
June 12, 2018