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Published by AR Career Ed, 2019-01-14 16:45:02

JobReady January Issue 2019



A Publication of the Arkansas Department of Career Education

Arkansas Rehabilitation Services Adult Education

Office of Skills Development

Career & Technical Education

Arkansans Impacted by ARCareerEd Share
Successes at School Board Conference

Our Mission: To prepare a job-ready, career-bound
workforce to meet the needs of Arkansas employers.

On the cover Table of Contents

Students from each division of the
Department of Career Education (Adult
Education, Arkansas Rehabilitation
Services, Career & Technical Education, Arkansans
and Office of Skills Development) shared
their successes with school board Impacted by
members during the Arkansas School 3 Around the Agency: 4 ARCareerEd
Board Association Annual Conference. Kim Asther Share Successes
More information about the ASBA at School Board
Conference on Page 4.

January 2019 Impacted by Students from
A public information publication 5 ARCareerEd 6 Represent Arkansas
of the Arkansas Department of Share Successes at National
Career Education. at School Board Championship in
Director Conference Las Vegas
Charisse Childers, Ph.D.

Communications Department
Chip McAfee,
Director of Communications
Kim Asther
Susan King
Ellice Scales Upcoming Events
Caty Young
[email protected]
Arkansas Department of Happy New Year! January 21, 2019
Career Education Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Three Capitol Mall
Little Rock, AR 72201 All state offices will be closed.
501-682-1509 fax
February 5, 2019 February 8, 2019
CTE Day at the Capitol Power Up Your Future
2nd Floor Rotunda Transition Fair
Arkansas State Capitol Holiday Inn
10 a.m. - 1 p.m. 1121 E. Main Street
Adult Education Blytheville, AR 72315
Arkansas Rehabilitation Services 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Career & Technical Education
Office of Skills Development

Director’s Update Around the

anuary is both the beginning of a new Construction Program and the
year and the beginning of the 92nd Arkansas Technical Careers lease welcome Kim Asther, the
JGeneral Assembly of the Arkansas Student Loan Forgiveness new Assistant Communications
State Legislature. Each brings new Program PDirector, to the ARCareerEd
opportunities for the agency to continue • Transferring oversight of family. She will be assisting with
serving Arkansans. Our agency will keep Northwest Technical Institute the communication initiatives of the
our focus on striving to be the model for from the Department of Career agency and its divisions. Asther
workforce and career development. The Education to the Northwest comes to us from the Department
administration will focus on Governor Technical Institute’s local board of Human Services where she
Hutchinson’s legislative priorities in four and oversight of Riverside served as a trainer in Organizational
areas: transformation, tax reform, teacher Vocational and Technical School Development and then in the Office
pay, and state highway funding. from the Department of Career of Procurement.
Transformation of State Education to the Board of An Illinois native, Asther has
Government: The proposed legislation Corrections been around the world honing
would downsize 42 commissions, boards • Transferring approval for her communications skills. Her
and agencies into 15 cabinet-level cosmetology schools in public background is diverse. After college,
departments. Governor Hutchinson educational institutions from the she became a missionary and lived in
announced this on October 3, 2018, Department of Career Education Northern Europe for eight years. Her
and I then shared the draft plan with the to the Department of Higher main focus was working in churches
agency. If passed, this would be the Education and Bible schools but included radio
first comprehensive reorganization of • Correcting name in Arkansas and television production. The last
state government since 1972. Projected Rehabilitation Act replacing four of her years in Europe were
estimates indicate by 2021 the savings Department of Career Education spent in Iceland and the Faroe
from efficiency would be $15 million a year. for Department of Human Islands teaching Bible School
Tax Reform: The administration Services in the to reflect current and producing Christian radio and
is proposing a package that would save governance television programs.
Arkansas taxpayers more than $110 • Correcting youth/work-based Returning to Arkansas in 2000,
million per year. This would be achieved learning principles to align with Asther has administrated and taught
by cutting the highest tax rate from 6.9 the apprenticeship tax credits in a local college and served as a
percent to 5.9 percent and reducing the Other legislation impacting the agency television producer and fundraiser for
number of tax tables from three to one. may arise during the course of the session KVTN, the local Christian television
The result would be lower taxes for the and I will share relevant updates with station.
citizens of Arkansas. the agency’s senior management team. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree
Teacher Pay: If successful, the Although we will be watching the progress in Communication/Journalism and a
proposed legislation would provide $60 of the administration’s legislative package, Master’s Degree in Leadership. She
million for gradual increases in teacher especially the proposed transformation is also an Assembly of God minister.
salaries over the next four years, bringing legislation, the ultimate outcome will not Asther said, “I am excited to
the minimum from its current $31,800 change our commitment to providing have this opportunity. I have a
to $36,000 per year. There would be a citizens with services geared to preparing passion for assisting people to realize
$1,000 increase to the base salary for the a job-ready, career bound workforce to their full potential, and I believe that
lowest base in Arkansas for the next two meet the needs of Arkansas employers. same goal is the driving force in this
years. The transformation legislation may change agency.”
State Highways: While both the how we are organized, but will not change
governor and legislators have indicated goals, objectives, or the services we
the need for increased funding for highway provide to Arkansans.
construction, no bills have been filed at this I am proud that in the previous year,
time. each program division, Adult Education,
The agency’s focus on legislation will Arkansas Rehabilitation Services, Career
include bills to amend or repeal legislation and Technical Education, the Office of
to reflect current operations. Highlights Skills Development—and all the operations
include revisions, transfers and repeals: divisions—successfully strengthened or
• Revising the vocational center expanded their services both inside the
funding model agency and to our customers. Kimberly "Kim" Asther,
• Allowing apprenticeship programs It is not possible to say thank you Assistant
to choose whether or not to have often enough, but I want to thank you Communications
a co-sponsor again for all you do on a daily basis to
• Repealing inactive, unfunded improve our state. I wish you the best in Director
programs: The Housing the coming year!


Arkansans Impacted by ARCareerEd Share Successes at School Board Conference

and did not give up on her grandson.
She continually encouraged him to

evin Hunt is articulate and well- go back to school. It was her passing
that brought about a turning point in
educated. He serves as the
KCommunity Philanthropy Liaison, Hunt’s life. Deeply grieving the loss
of the person who could see what he
an author, and motivational speaker. could become, he turned to the Adult
This doesn’t sound like someone
who could barely read or write before Education Center at Shorter College.
It wasn’t the thought of getting an
dropping out of school, but it is. Hunt
credits his accomplishments to his education or fulfilling his grandmother’s
dream for him that brought him back day
faith and the Department of Career after day he said. “It was the people achieve.”
Education, and he shared his story at “They believed in me, and they
the Arkansas School Board Association who encouraged me and helped me to poured into me, and it means a lot to
believe; they loved on me,” Hunt said.
Annual Conference. me,” Hunt said. “It has propelled me to
“Just 17 years ago, I couldn’t even “They would not give up on me, even the position that I am in today.”
spell the word ‘apple,'” Hunt said. That though I had given up on myself.” Although a college education was
It took a long time and the death of his
revelation discouraged and intimated not in his plan, his counselors and
him. His challenges in school and an beloved grandmother to get Hunt to teachers convinced him that it could be.
consider going back to school. “Once
unstable home life further eroded his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees he
self-confidence. He was painfully aware I got there, they helped me believe in earned in the next few years prove the
myself,” he said.
of the growing deficit in his education. Although it started slow, it wasn’t truth of their convictions. Hunt has since
Although Hunt said he can now look gone on to work in the governor’s office
back and laugh at where he was back long before he had an epiphany that as the Director of Minority Affairs before
changed the course of his life. One of
then, at the time, he felt hopeless. “I saw moving on to work at the Clinton School
failure every day,” he said. his teachers pointed out that if he could of Public Service. He has learned that
learn the lyrics to songs then he could
Instead of continuing what he had learn anything. That realization changed nothing can hold him back. “God had
come to see as pointless, he dropped a plan for my life,” Hunt said. “You just
out of school in the ninth grade. “I how Hunt saw himself. Learning can’t make this stuff up.”
became a passion for him.
always thought I was going to be To learn more about Hunt’s life and
According to Hunt, “When you
nothing,” Hunt said. “I felt defeated.” find someone who believes in you, it the book he published last year, visit
However, his grandmother can change your life. That’s what I
never lost hope. Hunt’s grandmother mobile/index.html.
understood the importance of education needed; someone to tell me what I could

summer making $15 an hour because
of the skills he learned through the
technical center. While working the
ormer welding student from the job, he realized that he also enjoys
Arkansas Northeastern College electrical work and decided to further his
FTechnical Center shared with education.
school board members from across Cash enrolled at Arkansas
the state how the classes he attended Northeastern College using the
through the center have led him towards concurrent credit he earned from
a successful career. attending the welding classes through
Payton Cash, Gosnell High School the Arkansas Northeastern College
graduate, knew he liked to work with his Technical Center. While attending
hands which lead him to take welding college, Cash worked a paid internship Northeastern College with an Associate
classes at the Arkansas Northeastern as an electrician for Nucor Yamato Steel. of Arts in Steel Related Technologies
CollegeTechnical Center while in high He said the internship had helped further in May of 2019 and will begin working
school. During his time at the center, his skills. as an Industrial Electrical Maintenance
Cash joined the Career & Technical “It is a really good opportunity for Personnel for Nucor Yamato Steel with a
Student Organization (CTSO) SkillsUSA students like me to be able to find the projected annual salary of $70,000.
and placed fourth in the state for pipe skills in the workplace and to fill the Secondary Technical Centers are
welding during the State Conference. demand for those jobs,” Cash said. under the division of the Office of Skills
After graduating high school, Cash Cash is graduating from Arkansas Development of the Department of
was able to work a welding job for the Career Education.


Arkansans Impacted by ARCareerEd Share Successes at School Board Conference

the OWL program vary depending on
the needs of the school. Students at
South Side High School help the school’s
ducators and students from the recycling program and work at the school’s
Opportunities for Work-Based coffee cart. At Clinton High School,
ELearning (OWL) program within the students assist with catering at the school’s
South Side, Van Buren and Clinton School sporting events and with the Suds-R-Us
Districts shared during the Arkansas School laundry program which provides students
Board Association Annual Conference that are less fortunate with laundering
about how the program is helping students services for their clothes. They also help
with disabilities become independent and with the school’s food bank. “Our students
productive members of the workforce. OWL are learning not just about the paycheck, Department.
is a program that provides work-based but how to give back to your community,” One OWL student, Garrett Nichols,
learning under pre-employment transition Hunt said. shared that he worked with the technology
services embedded within local school Another school-based enterprise at department at his school over the summer.
districts in collaboration with Arkansas South Side High School is shirt screen- “I am really big into computers; I’ve loved
Rehabilitation Services and Arkansas printing. Students take orders on shirt them since I was a little kid,” Nichols said.
Transition Services. designs that people want to be made, “That was a really good opportunity for me.”
Through the OWL program, students then design and print the shirt. “They are Nichols went on to describe how
receive real-life job experience in the showing their strengths [through these he felt valued and treated fairly by his
community and at the school. The students projects], and for once, for many of them, coworkers. “There was patience,” he said.
earn wages for their work and take pride in people are not noticing their weaknesses “I was doing the exact same work as the
the paycheck they bring home. “It makes first,” said Melanie Crider, an educator for people in that field do, and I was expected
their self-esteem go through the roof,” said South Side High School. to do a good job.”
Gretchen Hunt, an educator from Clinton Students also get to work outside Because of OWL, Nichols worked with
School District. “They finally feel like they of school in the community through the Joey Travolta at the Inclusion Film Camp
have a purpose; they understand what OWL program. Some students from South which led to an internship with Travolta. To
they are good at and we help them in those Side High School work at Dollar General, read more about the Inclusion Film Camp,
areas.” Damascus Community Library, Bee Branch please visit
The school-based enterprises through Water Department and Damascus Water jczl/.

The Parkview High School JAG
students started a college application
month in their school and provided
arkview High School Seniors Aumri daily tips on how to apply for college,
Duncan and Jose Santos placed scholarships, FAFSA, and more. They also
Pfirst in the nation during the Jobs sponsored a college round table day where
for Americas Graduates National Student they invited colleges from around the state
Leadership Academy in November. They to their high school to provide information
received the first place award for their to students. JAG students also donated
community service project they developed their time to give back to their community
and implemented through the Parkview through many volunteer days throughout After placing first in the State Student
High School Jobs for Arkansas Graduates the school year. Leadership Academy, Duncan and Santos
(JAG) program. Also, the students attended a business had the opportunity to represent their
Duncan and Santos shared their conference at the College of Business state at the National Student Leadership
experiences through JAG with school at the University of Central Arkansas. Academy in Washington D.C. They
board members from across the state Students learned about entrepreneurship described how competing in nationals was
during the Arkansas School Board and applied that knowledge by starting a a great experience.
Association Annual Conference. Duncan small business at their high school called “It was amazing to meet people
explained how he joined JAG to help Patriotic Creations. They are now selling from around the country that came [to
him find a job and help him improve his fanny packs at Parkview High School nationals],” Duncan said. “I had the chance
employability skills. “Now, because of JAG, through this business. to hear other people’s stories.”
I have learned how to be a great person in Duncan explained that these various He explained how he toured
the workplace.” projects make JAG more than a class. monuments around Washington D.C., and
Santos described how JAG is a “JAG is not just one class,” Duncan said. that gave them the opportunity to explore
“real-world class” that taught him about “It is something to get you interactive and beyond their hometown.
life outside of high school, including jobs, keep you active in the school so that you To read more about the students’ trip
career-planning, college, scholarships, can be the greatest person you can be in to Jobs for Americas Graduates National
etc. “JAG has helped me with my career the outside world.” Student Leadership Academy, visit http://
goals,” Santos said.


Students from Monticello Represent Arkansas

at National Championship in Las Vegas

tudents from Monticello placed
12 in the nation during the
S2018 Hot Rodders of Tomorrow
Engine Challenge Dual National
Championship at Specialty Equipment
Market Association (SEMA) in Las
Monticello High School students
Cole Nash, Dylan Mann, and Shane
McLean formed a team with Drew
Central High School students
Jamie Martin, Charlie Lytle, and
Bo Lum through the Auto Service
Technology classes they attend at
the Occupational Education Center,
a Secondary Technical Center in
Monticello. The team, led by their
instructor Shawn Poindexter, qualified
for the national championship by
disassembling and reassembling a
small block Chevrolet engine in under
33 minutes during the qualifying event Auto Service Technology students represented Arkansas during the Hot Rodders of
Tomorrow Engine Challenge Dual National Championship at SEMA in Las Vegas.
in Atlanta. This made their team only
the third rookie team in the history of
the competition to qualify for nationals.
The Hot Rodders of Tomorrow
Engine Challenge started in 2008
with five high school teams and 35
students competing at a single event
at the Race and Performance Expo in
St. Charles, IL. In 2018, there were 14
qualifying events in 11 states with 51
teams competing in the Dual Nationals
held at SEMA in Las Vegas and PRI
Show in Indianapolis. Three college
partners offered over $4.2 million in
scholarship money to the students
participating in the 2018 Dual National
As well as placing 12 in the
nation, the students received $5,000
each in scholarships for competing in
the nationals.
Secondary Technical Centers
is a program under the Office of
Skills Development Division of the Auto Service Technology students race against the clock to disassemble and
Department of Career Education. reassemble a small block Chevrolet engine during the Hot Rodders of Tomorrow Engine
Challenge in Las Vegas.


Career Education and Workforce
Development Board

Hugh McDonald, Chairman, Little
Senior Management Team Rock
Gina Radke, Vice Chairman,
Charisse Childers, Ph.D., Director
Don Bellcock, Internal Auditor Adam Arroyos, Ph.D., Fayetteville
Lorna Claudio, Chief Financial Officer D. Alan McClain, Commissioner Jerry Cash, Ed.D., Harrison
Otis Dixon, Chief Information Officer Joseph Baxter, Deputy Commissioner Scott Copas, Little Rock
Chip McAfee, Director of Communications Jonathan Bibb, Administrator/Associate Michael Garner, Hensley
Kelly Hunt Lyon, Ed.D., Strategic Planning Commissioner, Arkansas Career Training Stacy Gunderman, Batesville
and Development Manager Institute Troy Keeping, Marion
DeCarlia Smith, Human Resources Rodney Chandler, Director of Business Steve Percival, Little Rock
Administrator Engagement Jenifer Price, Springdale
Lisa A. Thompson, Personnel Manager Carl Daughtery, Chief of Field Services/ Jeff Standridge, Ed.D., Conway
Associate Commissioner Keith Vire, Ph.D., Fayetteville
Lynn Franquemont, Director of Burton Weis, Fort Smith
Community Service Programs Ex-Officio Members
Charles Lyford, General Counsel Richard Abernathy, Ed.D.,
James McCune, Chief Financial Officer Executive Director, AR Association
Trenia Miles, Ed.D., Deputy Director Judy Smith, Transition Director of Special of Educational Administrators
Daryl Bassett, Director, AR
Bridget Bullard Criner, Associate Director Projects
Robert Treviño, Associate Commissioner Department of Workforce Services
for Program, Planning Development & Johnny Key, Commissioner, AR
Evaluation Department of Education
Nathan Winter, Associate Commissioner Maria Markham, Ph.D., Director,
for Access & Accommodations AR Department of Higher Education
Mike Preston, Director,
Angela Kremers, Ed.D., Deputy Director AR Economic Development
Cheryl Wiedmaier, Ph.D., Associate Commission
Director Bill Stovall, Executive Director, AR
Sonja Wright-McMurray, Associate Cody Waits, Deputy Director Community Colleges
Director for Special Programs Stephanie Isaacs, Associate Director

ADULT EDUCATION Lonoke Small Business Program
501-683-2341 501-676-4490 501-683-3582
GED ® Monticello Stay At Work/ Return To Work
501-682-1980 870-367-9669 501-683-6052
ARKANSAS REHABILITATION North Little Rock Services for the
SERVICES 501-833-1490 Deaf & Hard of Hearing (SDHH)
Arkansas Career Training Institute Pine Bluff 501-686-2800
501-624-4411 870-534-2404 TAP (Telecommunications Access
Field Services Offices Russellville Program)
Batesville 479-890-5751 800-981-4463
870-793-4153 Searcy Transition Services
Benton 501-268-4542 501-682-5634
Booneville 870-773-2807 501-682-1040
479-675-3835 West Memphis Occupational Programs
Conway 870-735-4725 Agricultural Science and Technology
501-730-9725 Alternative Finance Program 501-682-2561
El Dorado 501-296-1663 Business/Marketing Technology
870-862-5451 Arkansas Governor's Commission on 501-682-1768
Fayetteville People with Disabilities Family & Consumer Sciences Education
479-582-1286 501-682-5317 501-682-1115
Fort Smith Arkansas Kidney Disease Commission Office of School Improvement
479-755-3300 (AKDC) 501-682-1616
Harrison 501-686-2807 Skilled and Technical Sciences
870-741-7153 Assistive Technology at Work (AT@ 501-682-1271
Helena Work) State Approving Agency for Veterans
870-338-2753 501-683-3009 Training and Education
Hot Springs Business Engagement 501-324-9473
501-623-4479 501-296-1659 OFFICE OF SKILLS DEVELOPMENT
Jonesboro Increasing Capabilities Access 501-683-1152
870-972-0025 Network (ICAN) Apprenticeship
Little Rock 501-666-8868 501-682-1360

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