Instructional Services » Career and Technical Education (CTE)

Career and Technical Education (CTE)


CTE provides students with the opportunity to experience real world situations through a variety of courses. The high school areas include: Agricultural Education; Business, Finance, and Information Technology Education; Career Development; Family and Consumer Sciences Education; Health Sciences Education; Marketing and Entrepreneurship Education; Technology Engineering and Design Education; and Trade and Industrial Education. Expanded course offerings are available through Wilson Community College. Students receive high school credit as well as community college credit for these courses. Current courses include DC/AC Electricity, Basic Wiring and Welding, Culinary, Legal Studies and Business. Middle school students in grades 6-8 can participate in the CTE curriculum through the computer technology; agri-science; business and entrepreneurship; biotechnology; and family and consumer sciences classes.

CTE uses the North Carolina Career Clusters Guide as a valuable resource to help students make decisions about planning and preparing for careers. The program provides a structure for selecting careers based on linking what a student knows about him/herself with information about occupations and typical training requirements.

Cooperative education is a method of instruction where technical classroom instruction is combined with paid employment that is directly related to the classroom instruction. The two experiences must be planned and supervised by the school and the employer so that each contributes to the student’s career objective/major and employability. Written cooperative agreements showing the instruction to be provided are developed by the school and employer providing the training. School credit is received for both the on-the- job training and the classroom components. Cooperative Education last for the entire semester. The student is released from school at 1pm every day to be allowed to report to work. Marketing CO-OP is taken at the same time as another Marketing course. The student receives one credit for each course.

An internship is a work-based learning experience where a student participates in the daily operations of a work site under the direct supervision of a business mentor. The internship provides a realistic environment within which a student intern learns about a particular industry or occupation and applies knowledge and skills learned in the classroom. The work experience should contribute to the student’s career pathway helping the student to narrow their career choices. Internships should take place over a semester students should be able to obtain at least 135 contact hours during the course of their internship. CTE Internship is taken for a one semester credit and can be repeated.

Job Shadowing is a short-term educational experience that introduces an individual student to a particular job or career by pairing the student with an employee of a business, industry, or agency. By following or shadowing the employee, the student becomes familiar with the duties associated with that occupation, the physical setting of the occupation, and the compatibility of  the occupation with his or her own career goals These work based learning opportunities can be limited to one day a week, once a month , or 5 days in one week. This program is very flexible.

CTE Advanced Studies is taken for one semester credit, other Level II courses can offer a short job shadow if it can be arranged.

If you are a student who is interested in participating in this program, please contact the Career Development Coordinator in the high schools. If you are a business who is interested in participating in Work-Based Learning, please contact our Work-Based Learning Coordinator at (252) 290-2628.

- Association of Marketing Education Students (DECA): a state and national organization open to all students taking Marketing Education courses.
DECA State Website
DECA National Website

-Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA): a state and national organization for middle and high school students enrolled in Business and Information Technology Education courses.
FBLA State Website
FBLA National Website

- Agricultural Education Students (FFA): a state and national organization that serves students enrolled in Agricultural Education courses.
FFA State Website
FFA National Website

- Technology Student Association (TSA): a state and national  organization for middle and high school students taking Technology Education courses.
TSA State Website
TSA National Website

- Every high school has a National Technical Honor Society Chapter

In collaboration with Wilson Community College and area business representatives , Wilson County Schools CTE has developed 5 career pathways. The nature of these pathways allow students to complete specified CTE courses while in high school, then transition to the community college to complete their studies in that area while working toward an Associate's Degree or an industry certification. A copy of all 5 pathways are available below:

WorkKeys is an ACT assessment which is administered to all North Carolina 12th grade CTE completers. A CTE completer is a student who has taken at least four courses in a Career Cluster. WorkKeys test measure “real world” skills that are critical to job success. These skills are essential to any occupation, skilled or professional, at any level of education and in any industry. CTE Completers take the following three WorkKeys test: Reading for Information, Applied Mathematics and Locating Information.

By taking the WorkKeys tests, students can earn a State Career Readiness Certificate (CRC), as well as a National Career Readiness Certificate. CRC’s and NCRC’s are awarded at four different levels: bronze, silver, gold and platinum. For questions on whether your child is eligible to take the WorkKeys test, please contact your school CTE Facilitator. Click this link to learn how to register your WorkKeys certificate: NCRC registration.