What is CTE? It’s a question we’ve heard from many people. If you’re new to the Hudson community, or just don’t have children who go to Alvirne High School, then not knowing what CTE is makes sense, so I guess we need to do a better job of explaining it. If you haven’t been following our Facebook page, check us out. It’s called Hudson NH – Renovations for Generations. We have been posting examples of amazing things that students in the CTE center are doing. In the meantime, here’s my two cents on what the CTE Center is, what programs it has and what benefits it has to the community.
CTE stands for Career and Technical Education. Actually, the official name of the CTE center at Alvirne is the Wilbur H. Palmer Vocational – Technical Center. Wilbur “Webb” Palmer was a teacher in Hudson for 38 years. He started in the junior high school in 1963 as a math and science teacher and eventually moved to Alvirne and became the agriculture teacher. He worked to expand the vocational programs offered and helped the Alvirne farm get out of debt by doing some selective cutting of the 100 acres across the street. He also taught general science classes and wrote a grant for environmental science so that the forestry program could be born. With help from the Department of Education, he purchased the first greenhouse at the high school, a used one at that, for $500. The vocational center expanded by adding classrooms and offices. Webb had a vision though of more than just a farm. He knew that students would do well with other classes where they could get hands on learning. He knew that kids could be successful in banking, child care, retail and a restaurant. His hard work, perseverance and vision finally paid off and made the CTE center a reality. The center opened in September 1992.
This CTE center has a variety of programs that can enhance a student’s high school experience. The programs provide hands-on learning with a rigorous and relevant curriculum. These programs include Finance, Accounting, Heavy Duty Mechanics, Pre-Engineering, Drafting and Design, Digital Media, Building Trades, Culinary Arts, Careers in Education, Horticultural Operations, Health Science, Marketing, Forest and Wildlife Management, Veterinary Science, Computer Science: Coding and Gaming, JROTC and Welding Technology. Through these programs, students can obtain college credit, obtain internships from local businesses and work in real life situations such as working on an active farm, building a tiny home, working in a restaurant kitchen
There are many CTE programs that benefit the Hudson community. There is Checkers Restaurant, which community members can go to for lunch on certain days and also rent out for meetings. There is the Little Broncos Pre-School, which allows Hudson residents to send their pre-school age children to, and there is always a waiting list! There is the Blooming Broncos Greenhouse and Flower Shop, where you can purchase flowers in the spring or around the holidays. There is the Alvirne Agri-Pet Kennel where you can take your pets to be groomed or have veterinary work performed. There is the Adult Day Program, where seniors and disabled adults can go for social and cognitive stimulation and health monitoring. This gives family members a break from care giving and peace of mind that their relative is in a safe environment.
The CTE programs don’t just benefit the community by places that community members can go. They also benefit local employers, who are able to hire students who have been through the programs and have had that hands on learning. This provides employers with a more experienced work force.
This is just a quick example of what the Career and Technical Education Center is and just a few of the benefits that this center brings to our community. Webb Palmer knew that these programs not only helped the students with hands on learning, but it prepared them to enter the work force or go on to post-secondary education. I hope that Hudson residents can have his vision and look forward to what the CTE Center can become, extending his vision, knowing that this is for the good of the students.
Next Blog Topic: The Importance of Voting on March 13!