February 2019: Career and Technical Education Month

WHEREAS, February 1-28, 2019, has been designated as Career and Technical Education Month® by the Association for Career and Technical Education; and,

WHEREAS, career and technical education (CTE) offers students the opportunity to gain the academic, technical, and employability skills necessary for true career readiness; and,

WHEREAS, students in career and technical education programs participate in authentic, meaningful experiences that improve the quality of their education and increase their engagement and achievement; and,

WHEREAS, career and technical education provides students with career exploration opportunities earlier in their educational experience, which enables them to make informed and beneficial decisions about their academic coursework and pursue established programs of study and career pathways; and,

WHEREAS, leaders from businesses and industries nationwide report increasing challenges related to addressing the skills gap and connecting qualified professionals with available careers in critical and growing CTE-related fields, including healthcare, energy, advanced manufacturing, and information technology; and,

WHEREAS, career and technical education prepares students for these and other fulfilling careers by offering integrated programs of study that link secondary and postsecondary education, and lead to the attainment of industry-recognized credentials; and,

WHEREAS, ensuring that employers have access to a qualified workforce is a crucial step in ensuring productivity among the business and industry communities as well as continued American economic growth and global competitiveness; and,

WHEREAS, The Smith-Hughes Act, the first act of Congress to provide funding for career and technical education, was signed into law 102 years ago and allows us to celebrate how far CTE has come to become a powerhouse of America’s economy;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, proclaim February 2019 as Career and Technical Education Month in Michigan