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Celebrating Career and Technical Education Month

February 4, 2021

February is commonly known as a month-long celebration of Black History Month, but February is also when Career and Technical Education (CTE) Month® is celebrated. CTE encompasses any field of study that prepares students for “high-wage, high-skill, high-demand careers” according to the Association for Career & Technical Education (ACTE)1.

According to Applied Educational Systems, CTE is composed of 16 clusters of in demand careers:

  1. Health science;
  2. Business;
  3. Sales;
  4. Finance;
  5. Information technology;
  6. Science, technology, engineering, and math;
  7. Manufacturing;
  8. Logistics;
  9. Hospitality;
  10. Government;
  11. Law;
  12. Agriculture;
  13. Human services;
  14. Construction;
  15. Training; and
  16. Arts, audio/visual technology, and communications2.

Each of the 16 fields of study within CTE focus primarily on providing students with hands-on education so they learn practical skills that make them directly and immediately employable in their field2. While CTE historically has been separated from degree programs, possibly due to its roots in vocational education, academic certifications and degrees do fall under the umbrella of CTE. According to The Glossary of Education Reform, CTE “is a term applied to schools, institutions, and educational programs that specialize in the skilled trades, applied sciences, modern technologies, and career preparation”3.

“CTE students are marginally less likely to enroll in college but no less likely to earn a degree – but CTE coursework does predict employment outcomes,” said According to Brian A. Jacob, a Walter H. Annenberg Professor of Education Policy, Professor of Economics, and Professor of Education at the University of Michigan. “Importantly, they find that CTE participation is associated with higher wages, with the increase driven entirely by upper-level coursework, defined as courses within a sequence beyond the introductory class, in more technical fields.4

To provide students with a hands-on education so they can attain a high-paying career after graduation, Capitol Tech’s curricula are led by professors with years of experience working in their field. This allows student to learn skills currently used by professionals in their chosen field of study through hands-on labs and projects, allowing student to use classroom lessons to solve problems they’ll encounter in the field.

Capitol Tech’s President, Dr. Brad Sims, has been focused on creating programs that incorporate hands-on learning and directly result in higher employment rates for students since his inauguration has been on creating programs.

“Education as a sector has changed dramatically over the last decade, and will continue to change. Fewer students pursue education purely for the joy of learning or the promise of transformation of thinking. Many more students seek a direct connection between their learning and their career objectives. Capitol Tech is well-situated to meet the goals of both today’s students and today’s industry,” said Dr. Sims. “Expanding Capitol Tech’s online learning by offering rigorous and engaging content in an asynchronous format will provide opportunity to those who cannot access the traditional model of learning. Asynchronous learning will make degrees more available to our active military, working adults, and young people with career and family responsibilities that make a campus education inaccessible to them.”

As a four-year, non-profit STEM-focused that offers degree programs and/or courses in Business, Information Technology, Manufacturing, Logistics, and Construction, Capitol Tech supports over one-third of 16 CTE sectors and wholly supports its mission of providing students with in-demand and lucrative jobs.


  1. Association for Career & Technical Education. (2021). What is CTE?. Retrieved from
  2. Applied Educational Systems. (2020, February 4). What Is Career & Technical Education (CTE)?. Retrieved from
  3. The Glossary of Education Reform. (2014, April 29). Career and Technical Education. Retrieved from
  4. Brookings. (2017, October 5). What we know about Career and Technical Education in high school. Retrieved from