Tag Archives: CTE

Future Entrepreneurs Travel to Atlanta to Compete at International Business Competition

Local students from Longview, Kelso, and Castle Rock will travel to Atlanta Georgia to compete with students from Canada, Spain, Puerto Rico, and China at the International Career Development Conference. For R. A. Long High School in Longview, Washington, this will be the first year in many that students have made it to the international DECA conference. DECA, or Distributive Clubs of America is a business centric organization committed to providing “a remarkable experience in the preparation of emerging leaders and entrepreneurs.”

Sue Edmunson teaches CTE at R. A. Long in Longview, Washington. While other schools in the southwest Washington area have classes dedicated to preparing students for entrepreneurial competitions, Edmunson’s students have to study on their own time, after school.

Preparation includes intensive study of course materials in business management and administration, marketing, finance, and hospitality and tourism, and business administration management. Judges for the competition come from business and industry and volunteer to help students prepare to become future business leaders. For students to be able to compete in a local area, they must pass 100 questions tests with high scores At the competition, students have to take the test and then perform impromptu scenarios that are given to them by the judges.

Winners advance to state, national, and then the international competition which will be held in Atlanta from May 2-6, this year.

Edmunson’s students will be competing in “Buying and Merchandising Team Decision Making.”

Edmunson is a vocal advocate of career and technical education. In a phone interview, she voiced respect and pride for the 24 students who entered the competition. “The most impressive thing about being involved in a program like this is that I have never had a kid get this far into the competition without realizing that they need to continue investing in themselves to continue to develop,” she said.

Edmunson notes that students in her program realize that they have achieved this success on their own, outside of the classroom. They see the business leaders seek out their skills. They build camaraderie with other students. “When they succeed at this level, they just want to grow more,” she said.




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Longview Students Storm STEMFest in Vancouver

Longview CTE Students Storm STEMFest in Vancouver from Kaley Perkins on Vimeo.

Sue Edmunson and Sharon McElroy, two high school teachers from R. A. Long High School in Longview, Wash. brought 30 students from their business classes to Vancouver on Friday, Sept. 20 to participate in this year’s STEMFest. Both women teach CTE, or career and technology education, a subject that prepares students for the technological expectations that their future employers will place on them. McElroy’s students are from her “Microsoft IT Academy” class and Edmunson’s are in the heavily technology-dependent “Pre-Press Desktop Publishing” class.

STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and math.

Projections by the U.S. Department of Commerce and Washington STEM Center 2010 paint a picture of job growth in STEM careers that coincide with a shortage of workers with the skills to fill them. Edmunson wants to fix that and with a background in building bridges between students and the workforce, she is doing just that.

Edmunson writes, “I read statistics somewhere that if you can get a kid actually onto a college campus (6) times in their high school career, they will most likely choose college after high school.” Edmunson and McElroy signed up their students for STEMFest 2013.

First stop on the tour was at Clark College where student ambassadors in STEM disciplines led the high schoolers around campus, talking about their school experiences and the benefits of Clark College. Audreyana Foster, who studies aerospace and mechanical engineering at Clark, pointed out that her class sizes are small and that her advisors are proactive advocates of her success.

STEMFest is a multi-day, community-wide event. Mary Brown from Southwest Washington’s Workforce Development Council (“SWWDC”) is champion and coordinator of the event. She met with Edmunson (“Mizz Ed”) and the yearbook students at Vancouver’s community newspaper, The Columbian.

There, students heard from Rachel Rose about the nature of work in an independent and locally-owned paper. After showing students printing plates and mock ups of the four color print process, Rose led them on a facility tour where she explained the process of turning metal plates into printed newspapers.

John Hill, Interactive Editor,  directs The Columbian’s digital news division. Hill talked with students about the workflow of reporters in a digital age and let the students know what kind of technology skills they would need to have to be able to work in a newspaper.

Though the event is now over, the interactive map below contains the locations, dates, and times of STEMFest 2013 events. Drag the hand to reposition the map for maximum viewing.

View STEMFest 2013 Activities in a larger map

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