The Belton Journal

A senior at Lake Belton High School is the winner of the Career and Technical Education Award, given annually by Congressman John Carter, of District 31 of the United States House of Representatives.

Dakota Branch, a senior at Lake Belton High School was recently given the award by the Congressman.

Her CTE training included child development, principles of education and training, and counseling classes through Belton ISD’s CTE programming.

“I hosted the TX-31 Career and Technical Education (CTE) Awards to celebrate our outstanding CTE students. Career and technical education has long been a passion for me in Congress, because it opens doors for students to find a successful career without a traditional four-year college degree,” said Congressman Carter. “I created the CTE awards several years ago to give vocational students an outlet to be celebrated and to promote CTE as an alternative to the traditional education path.

High School Career and Technical Education (CTE) was strengthened by federal law in the 21st Century Act to aggressively prepare students to move into the workforce or continue career-focused education after high school and contains sixteen rigorous Career Clusters for study: Agriculture, Construction, Communications, Business, Education, Finance, Public Administration, Health Sciences, Hospitality, Human Services, IT, Law and Corrections, Manufacturing, Marketing, STEM, and Transportation.

Within the Career Clusters are 79 pathways that lead students directly to high skill, high wage careers.

CTE develops career goals with real-world learning experiences: job skills training, job-shadow, business and industry internships, business and industry certifications and licensures, employment in entry-level jobs, and college credit on high school campus. CTE empowers students to become life-long learners who are self-sufficient, competitive, and employed.

TX 31 award nominations are open to outstanding high school students completing their CTE studies. They may be enrolled at a private, public, or home school.

TX 31 includes students in Bosque, Burnet, Coryell, Hamilton, and parts of Bell and Williamson counties. Applications are accepted during a time period the beginning of the calendar year with the winner announced each spring.