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During the week of April 12, Caddo Schools will highlight career paths, valuable certifications and coursework provided by the Caddo Career and Technology Center (CCTC).

The Caddo Career and Technology Center is the career and technical education extension of Caddo Parish Public Schools, available to all high school students in the district. The school offers courses that provide students with the academic, technical and employable skills along with the knowledge needed to pursue postsecondary training or higher education. CCTC offers rigorous academic instruction to prepare students for success in the workforce or in college through the school’s college prep programs.

“The student experience at CCTC goes beyond skill acquisition,” said Kenneth Berg, Principal of Caddo Career and Technology Center. “We’re teaching students real-world skills like critical thinking, problem solving, teamwork and communication while also giving them a unique opportunity to explore careers where they may find a new passion. We are preparing students for their future careers.”

More than 25 programs are offered on campus and for student Emily Nguyen, the Dental Assisting program would give her a jump start on her career path in dentistry.

“This experience as a student at CCTC has been beneficial for me career wise and it has given me a hands-on experience with dental assisting,” said Nguyen, a senior at Caddo Parish Magnet High School. “My future goals now are to minor in dental hygiene and major pre-dental so I can work as a hygienist while going to school to become a dentist. CCTC has helped me realize that this is the path I want to take and the career that I want to pursue.”

In addition to graduating with her high school diploma, Nguyen will also receive an industry-based credential which certifies her to work as a dental assistant right out of high school. This is one example of the more than 600 industry-based credentials earned by CCTC students each school year.

CCTC also offers work-based learning programs where students can earn valuable on-the-job experience with a local employer, while also garnering a paycheck and high school credit towards graduation. For student LaQuinton McKinley, the work-based learning program has been instrumental in helping him to determine his next step in life.

“Before attending the Career Center, I didn’t know anything about drafting or architecture,” said McKinley, a senior at Woodlawn Leadership Academy. “I’ve been a Career Center student for three years and now I’m interested in pursuing a career in drafting so I can travel and build houses. I’ve been able to work with a local firm through the work-based learning program, and they’ve been very encouraging and helpful. I’m going to miss the Career Center after I graduate.”

Caddo Career Week will culminate with an open-house event for interested families to tour the campus on Friday. The campus located at 5950 Union Ave. will be open from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information on Caddo Career & Technology Center or to enroll as a student, visit Caddocareer.com.