A Publication of the Arkansas Department of Career Education
Arkansas Adult Education Graduate
Shines on National Stage
On the cover Table of Contents
Kevin Hunt is an author with a book
to be released in early 2018 and the
community philanthropy fellow at the Career & Technical Around the State
University of Arkansas for the Center
on Community Philanthropy at the 4 Students in 5 Check out what the
Clinton School of Public Service. Texarkana Give Department of Career
Hunt gives credit for his successes Back To The Education has been up
to Arkansas Adult Education. to around the state.
More information about Kevin
Hunt's success on Page 6.
7 Development Helps At National Career
Office of Skills
January 2018 Conference
A public information publication
of the Arkansas Department of
Career Education. Bearden Teacher JAG Leaders,
Director 9 Wins Regional 10 Students
Charisse Childers, Ph.D. Award by Pursuing Represent
Communications Department Her Passion at National
Dustin Barnes Conference
Ellice Scales Upcoming Events
Arkansas Department of Jan. 1, 2018 Jan. 9, 2018
Career Education Happy New Year! Career Education and
Three Capitol Mall All state offices will be closed. Workforce Development
Little Rock, Arkansas 72201 Board Meeting
501-682-1500 525 W. Capitol Ave.
501-682-1509 fax Little Rock, AR 72201
Jan. 11, 2018 Jan. 15, 2018
Arkansas Rehabilitation Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Association (ARA) Day
Board Meeting All state offices will be
Adult Education 525 W. Capitol Ave. closed.
Arkansas Rehabilitation Services Little Rock, AR 72201
Career & Technical Education
Office of Skills Development 10:00 a.m.
s the Arkansas Department Additionally, two in three parents feel
of Career Education that a career requiring a skilled trade
A(ARCareerEd) continues its is not for their child, and fewer and
focus on workforce education and fewer children are considering these Charisse Childers, Ph.D.
training in the new year, it is important career paths as a respectable option.
that we revisit the guiding principles Today, the skills gap accounts
Governor Hutchinson established for for 600,000 high-wage-earning jobs
training Arkansas's workforce. left unfilled across the U.S., tens of
Regionally, business and thousands of those jobs here in our growth when business and industry
industry should guide job skill training state. These jobs are increasingly are actively involved in informing and
programs; Partnerships with two- requiring some form of postsecondary educating youth and adults about
year colleges, technical schools, and education and, according to research the skills and education needed for
high schools are needed; Funding from the Georgetown Center on current and future jobs. Teachers
for workforce training "has to follow" Education and the Workforce, by can teach, and students can receive
business and industry; and State 2020, approximately 58 percent of jobs training in skills that are currently in
government agencies should be in Arkansas will require education or demand and are consistent with the
organized around these principles. training beyond high school resulting priorities of their respective economic
The Career Education and in a certificate or above. development region. Most importantly,
Workforce Development Board of Through the work of Governor this active involvement increases the
ARCareerEd further reinforced these Hutchinson, the legislature and the likelihood of the student preparing for
principles when they adopted the new workforce agencies in Arkansas, the and getting a job that is in demand and
mission and vision for the agency, Department of Career Education is pays well in that region and across the
along with a demand-driven, results- building a comprehensive statewide state of Arkansas.
focused strategic plan to accomplish system with multiple career paths Our goal is that when a youth or
this mission and vision. and job skills training geared toward adult completes any of our programs,
As our economy in Arkansas and employment. We must all work he or she can be assured that there
in the U.S. continues to grow and together to bring awareness to the job are employers in need of someone
expand at a record-breaking pace, opportunities in Arkansas and provide with those skills. We can achieve
education and workforce leaders are the information and skills needed to this when business and industry work
even more focused on the quality and prepare for these jobs. with schools and training providers to
availability of labor. In Arkansas today, As I search for the "silver bullet" ensure that the education and training
49 percent of skilled-trade workers are or the "missing link," I always end that is being provided will lead to
45 and older, and nearly 18 percent up focusing on one critical element employment. Industry coordinated,
are between the ages of 55 and 64. - Business and Industry. As you demand-driven programs and
Compare that to the national statistics, have heard many times, "education industry-recognized certifications will
and Arkansas finds itself in the and business go hand in hand." Our better prepare our youth and adults for
majority, with more than half of U.S. cities, counties, regions and the state employment.
states in the same or worse shape. are better positioned for economic
Program Spotlight: Field Services
he mission of Arkansas job-training, supported employment, services can qualify. We have 20
Rehabilitation Services (ARS) job placement/business engagement, field offices, featuring a One-Stop
Tis to provide opportunities for and independent living services. In office, covering all 75 counties. Please
individuals with disabilities to work addition, Field Services provides contact the office nearest you to set up
and lead productive and independent services for the deaf and hard of an appointment.
lives. Field services, the main program hearing and a program for small Call 800-330-0632 or visit http://
within ARS, assists with career and business assistance. www.ARCareerEd.org/services/
technical education, various training Anyone who is a legal Arkansas arkansas-rehabilitation-services/field-
programs, transition services, on-the- resident and determined eligible for services/ars-field-offices to locate the
field office nearest you.
Career & Technical Students in Texarkana Give Back To The Community
tudents in the Graphic
Arts Class at the
STexarkana Career and
Technological Center not only
learn skills such as graphic
design and printing, but they
also learn valuable life lessons.
For the twelfth year, this
class has adopted angels from
the Salvation Army's Angel
Tree and bought presents for
them. Every year this class
sells, designs and prints
personalized notepads as a
class fundraiser. These funds
help offset the cost of students
attending the state SkillsUSA
conference, class t-shirts, and
other projects like the Angel
"We wanted to give back
to the community because we Students in the Graphic Arts Class at the Texarkana Career and Technological Center
get so much support during give back to the community by buying toys for angels on the Salvation Army's Angel Tree.
our notepad fundraiser,” said
Graphic Arts Instructor Carla
Phares. "It gives my students said Chyna Hill, a second-year
a fun reward for working so graphic arts student, and junior
hard for two months to fill all at Arkansas High. "This is a
the notepad orders. They have great way to help out people
so much fun shopping for 'their in need in our community. It
angel,' even the boys enjoy makes me feel like I'm making
picking out clothes and toys." a difference and making the
Phares has seen this class holidays special for someone."
project grow over the twelve Phares says she loves
years she has been doing it. seeing the excitement and joy
She says the first year they did her students get from helping
it, they had four angels and others. "This project just
spent around $1,000. This brings us closer together and
year, the class adopted ten helps remind us of the really
angels and spent $2,500. important things during the Students shop for the angels they have
"I feel like an angel myself," holidays. The students love it, adopted from the Salvation Army's Angel
and so do I." Tree.
Fort Smith Little Rock
Santa and Mrs. Claus visited the Adult
Education Center in Fort Smith on the last
day of classes before the holiday break.
Siloam Springs Jonesboro
The 2017-2018 Future Business Leaders
of America (FBLA) State Officers hold their
mid-year Executive Council meeting in
A Jonesboro High School Senior and her
The FFA Chapter at Siloam Springs
High School hosted the National FFA Career Coaches celebrate after receiving a
Officers on Dec. 14. The National FFA personal phone call from the Chancellor of
Officers also visited the FFA Chapters at Arkansas State University announcing her
Bentonville West High School, Fayetteville acceptance to the university and awarding
her with a scholarship.
High School, Lincoln High School, and
Greenland High School.
Walnut Ridge Fire Department has
partnered with Walnut Ridge High School
and Black River Technical College to offer
classes to prepare students for a career
as a firefighter. These classes could put
students ahead one year on required
courses for the career. Pictured above (left
to right): Jacob Kersey, Walnut Ridge High
School Principal; James Price, Instructor;
The Advanced Manufacturing students at A CTE Teacher in the Southside School Kathi Turner, Deputy Director for Career
the Northeast Arkansas Career & Technical District won a $1,000 prize in a business & Technical Education; Alan Haskins,
Center and their instructor, Ricky Barker, idea competition for his small start-up Instructor; and Matthew Schutzius, School
toured Jonesboro Tool & Die. business, sUAVe Perceptions. Resource Officer.
Arkansas Adult Education Graduate Shines on National Stage
K evin Hunt is on his way to
becoming a household name.
The Little Rock native
currently serves as the community
philanthropy fellow at the University
of Arkansas for the Center on
Community Philanthropy at the
Clinton School of Public Service.
Before that, he served as minority
affairs liaison under Arkansas
Governor Mike Beebe. He has
earned a bachelor's degree and a
master's degree. In addition, Hunt
is an author. His book, Why Me,
God?, is set to be released in early
But he does not credit his
accomplishments to his intellect or
good luck. He salutes Arkansas
Adult Education for it.
"It has amazing people working Kevin Hunt gives credit to Arkansas Adult
there who loved me and allowed me Education for helping him achieve his Kevin Hunt's book, Why Me, God?, is set
to learn at the rate that I learned and goals. to be released in early 2018.
provided me with all the tools that I
needed," Hunt said.
Hunt dropped out of junior high congressional leaders, providing Outstanding Student Achievement
school and had begun to assume them with insight on GED programs Award by Adult Education. This
a life headed toward a downward and urging lawmakers to support honor was bestowed upon him
spiral. He wanted better for himself, them. during the 50th Anniversary of Adult
so he made a decision that would "Kevin has definitely been one Education in Arkansas.
lead him on a positive path. Hunt of our great success stories," said "Now that I have my GED , all
enrolled in the Shorter College Trenia Miles, Ed.D., Deputy Director the doors have been opened for me,
GED program. of Arkansas Adult Education, a and the opportunities have been
"The adult education community division of the Arkansas Department coming to me," he said.
in the state of Arkansas has helped of Career Education. "His journey After he releases his book, Hunt
me, inspired me, and pushed me. is so inspiring that it will encourage wants to be a motivational speaker,
They have just wanted to see me anyone to take that next step. It is sharing his story with youth at Boys
continue on in my professional our continued hope that stories like and Girls clubs, juvenile and re-entry
and educational career. Without Kevin's will inspire others without a facilities, and schools. He wants
adult education, the people in the high school diploma to enroll in adult to encourage his listeners to work
trenches doing the work and helping education and begin their journey hard, set dreams, and soar.
people like me, I wouldn't be in the towards a fulfilling life." After all, it is what Adult
position that I'm in today," Hunt said. Hunt has become one of Education helped him to do.
Hunt shared his story of success Arkansas Adult Education's most "I needed Adult Education, and
at the Coalition on Adult Basic recognized alumni, serving as a I didn't know I needed it. It helped
Education (COABE) conference voice on commercials and even propel me to where I am. I thank
in October. This opportunity as a speaker at various events. In God for placing it in my life to help
also allowed him to meet with 2016, Hunt was presented with the lead me," Hunt said.
Office of Skills Development Helps UA-PTC Develop Leaders
new program offered by
University of Arkansas-Pulaski
A Technical College is helping
to grow future Arkansas business
leaders. The Emerging Leaders
Development Program is a 36-week
course which teaches leadership
and management skills to current
employees of local companies.
Completion of this course makes
the participants more qualified to fill
advanced positions that may open
up within their company. Arkansas
Department of Career Education's
Office of Skills Development (OSD)
helped fund this course with their
Skills Development Grants.
"This is a perfect example of
what these grants are intended to
do," said OSD Director Cody Waits.
"These grant dollars are meant to
help keep Arkansas businesses and The inaugural class of the Emerging Leaders Development Program at the University of
their employees well-trained, current, Arkansas-Pulaski Tech graduated on Dec. 13.
and competitive. We are proud to
support this innovative program as
it clearly shows a true partnership part were both large and small and [email protected] Companies
between business and industry, higher included manufacturing, technology, wanting to know more about Skills
education, and the State of Arkansas." insurance and metal service. The Development Grants can visit http://
Five central Arkansas businesses second cohort is now being planned. ARCareerEd.org/about/skills-
took part in the inaugural class of Any companies wanting to know development/skills-development-
this program. The companies taking more about this program can contact grants.
Elizabeth Reeves at UA-PTC at
Arkansas Helps Lead National Talk On Federal and State Audits
rkansas Department of District, Barbara Goldsby with
Career Education’s Chief the Colorado Department of
AFinancial Officer Lorna Education, and Penni Haberly
Claudio was recently invited to with the Technical College Lorna Claudio
take part in a panel discussion System of Georgia.
on audits at the Brustein & “I was honored to be a part
Manasevit Fall Forum, which of this panel,” Claudio said.
is a national conference on “While other panelists shared since we don’t have any federal
federal grant funds. In addition their audit findings and the audit issues.”
to Claudio, the expert panelists corrective action that they did, The event organizers said
included Hector Arancibia with I discussed a more proactive this panel was the most highly-
the Los Angeles Unified School approach to avoid audit findings rated session of the conference.
Arkansas Shines At National Career & Technical Conference
he Association of Career
& Technical Education
T(ACTE) held its annual
National Conference Dec. 6
through Dec. 9 in Nashville,
Tennessee, and Arkansas was
well represented. In addition
to the numerous Arkansas
educators in attendance,
many were helping to lead
the conference. Bearden High
School Business Teacher Jana
McWhorter was awarded the
2017 ACTE Region IV Teacher
of the Year Award (see the
full story on the next page).
Beebe High School teacher
Chad Mercado led a workshop
session on his very successful
drone program, which was
well attended by educators Arkansas Department of Career Education's director Charisse Childers, Ph.D. (second
from around the country. from left) is on a discussion panel accompanied by Stephen Pruitt, Commissioner of
Also, Arkansas Department of Education, Kentucky Board of Education (middle); Heather Justice, Executive Director
of the Office of Career and Technical Education, Tennessee Department of Education
Career Education's Director, (second from right); and Steve Partridge, Vice President of Workforce Development,
Dr. Charisse Childers, was part Northern Virginia Community College (right). The panel discusses the challenges to
of a four-person national panel Career & Technical Education.
discussing challenges to CTE
and some of Arkansas's best
practices that are being used
around the state.
The Arkansas Department of Career
Education staff that attended the
conference included Chris Bacchus, Jana McWhorter (middle) accepts her
Will Douthard, Marna Farris, Mary Beck, award for 2017 ACTE Region IV Teacher
Chad Mercado, a teacher at Beebe High Trena Shedd, Jenna Brown, and Cheryl of the Year at the National Association
School, discusses the drone program he Wiedmaier, Ph.D. of Career & Technical Education (ACTE)
has implemented at his school. Conference in Nashville, Tennessee.
Bearden Teacher Wins Regional Award by Pursuing Her Passion
ana McWhorter, a business approached McWhorter about
teacher at Bearden High moving up and teaching at the high
JSchool, cannot think of any school.
other job she wants. "He said that if no one else
"This is the only career I've comes and applies, we're going to
had," she said. "It doesn't feel move you to high school. Over the
like I'm going to work every summer, I waited to see if anyone
day. It feels like you're making a would come and we didn't have
difference. It's fun." anyone to apply," McWhorter said.
Her zest for teaching has McWhorter made a drastic
been recognized by her peers, change again after spending a year
as she was named the 2017 teaching biology. The school's
Region IV Association of Career business teacher was deployed
and Technical Education (ACTE) and the yearbook needed to be
Teacher of the Year. This award finished. McWhorter took on the Jana McWhorter, CTE teacher for
salutes outstanding career and role. While the deployed business Bearden School District, holding her award
technical education teachers who teacher kept filing extensions, for 2017 Region IV ACTE Teacher of the
demonstrate a strong commitment McWhorter became certified in Year.
and dedication to the discipline business. That was ten years ago.
while preparing students for life "You do what you need to do
after school. to help your school. I love CTE. I science through modern
"We have great students am so thankful to have been able technologies.
here, and that helps to be a to stay with CTE. It's constantly "I love it. I have changed
commendable teacher," said changing, and as you can see, I classes to accommodate students'
McWhorter, who is in her twenty- like change," McWhorter said while needs and what employers are
second year as an educator. chuckling. looking for. You have to modify
Her principal, Felecia Bryant This year, McWhorter is and adjust according to industry,"
Doster, said that McWhorter teaching Computer Business she said.
"works endlessly to build open Applications, Business Procedures, While McWhorter did not
relationships with all students [by] Digital Communication III win the national title, which
forming bonds that make them feel and IV (which will next year was announced in Nashville in
comfortable in taking her classes be called Social Media and December, she is grateful to have
and also creates an environment Communications), Business Law been a finalist. McWhorter said
where students want to take and Financial Literacy. Also, she the winning teacher, who hails from
business classes." advises as the school's Future New York, is well deserving of the
McWhorter's journey as a Business Leaders of America award.
teacher started early. Her mother (FBLA) chapter. This past summer, To be named among the
taught elementary school. She she and two students traveled to best CTE teachers is a humbling
followed in her footsteps. Facebook's headquarters in Menlo accomplishment for McWhorter,
"That's how my mind was set Park, California, representing the especially for doing something that
up. I always knew I wanted to be state as the inaugural winners she truly loves.
in education," she said. of the TechStart New Frontier "If you aren't doing something
For eleven years, she taught competition. TechStart is a you enjoy, then you're doing the
elementary grades. But after Facebook education initiative in wrong thing," she said.
earning a master's degree in high schools that encourages
biology, the superintendent students to explore computer
JAG Leaders, Students Represent the State at National Conference
obs for Arkansas Graduates
students and teachers
Jparticipated in the 2017 Jobs for
America’s Graduates National Student
Leadership Academy in Washington,
D.C., from Nov. 29 through Dec.
1. Nineteen students from seven
Arkansas High Schools attended
the conference, participating in team
building exercises and competitive
events in four categories: Public
Speaking, Math Skills, Employability
Skills, and Project-Based Learning.
With over 400 students from
33 states competing, Arkansas is
proud to announce that Laura Leal
Ortiz, a senior from Heber Springs
High School, placed first in the
Math Competitive Event, and Kierra
Humphrey, Vanessa Rogers-Wright, Jobs for Arkansas Graduates (JAG) Educators attend the Jobs for America's Graduates
and Jakiya Ursery, all of Parkview (JAG) National Student Leadership Academy in Washington D.C.
High School, placed third as a
team in the Project Based Learning National Above and Beyond Award Governor Hutchinson at the JAG
Competitive Event. Special thanks for her efforts in fundraising and Board of Trustees Meeting held during
are extended to the JAG teachers for implementation of the JAG model in the national event.
helping the students to prepare for Arkansas school districts. Tate served The Jobs for Arkansas Graduates
the competition: Mary Perkins-Jacobs as Jobs for Arkansas Graduates State program is represented in 113 schools
(State Competition Coordinator, J.A. Coordinator for 10 years. across the state and serves more
Fair High), Gladys Godley (Parkview Chris Massingill, an Arkansan and than 2,000 students. The curriculum
High), Ricky Grisham (Sloan-Hendrix former Chairman of the Delta Regional focuses on dropout prevention among
High), Gracia Stroud (Sylvan Hills Authority, was presented with the students who are most at-risk. For
High), Cheryl Burns (Bald Knob High), Hope and Opportunity Partnership the past 11 years, Arkansas has
Karen Purvis (Mena High), Gaye Stark Award during the Leadership Awards received the coveted “5 of 5” award,
(Heber Springs High), Gloria Whale reception, for his outstanding efforts to recognizing that students in the JAG
(Joe T. Robinson High), Stephanie increase opportunities for students in program have a significantly greater
K’Nuckles (McClellan High), and Mary the Arkansas Delta. potential to graduate high school, get
Hines (Hall High). The conference was also attended a job, keep the job, have a full-time job
Students attending the national by Shannon Buckner, Special or enroll in postsecondary education or
conference competed and received Populations Program Manager, and the military.
first, second or third place at the Sonja Wright McMurray, Associate Jobs for Arkansas Graduates is
Jobs for Arkansas Graduates State Director for Career and Technical funded by the Arkansas Department
Competition. Entergy, Inc. and Education – Special Projects. Buckner of Career Education with addditonal
Department of Workforce Services/ and McMurray serve on staff at the support from Entergy, Inc., AT&T,
Temporary Assistance for Needy Arkansas Department of Career Tyson Foods, and Arkansas
Families division provided grant Education. Governor Asa Hutchinson Department of Workforce Services. If
funding for student participation at the serves as one of twelve Governors you or your business is interested in
National Student Leadership Academy. on the Jobs for National Graduates learning more, please contact Sonja
Jobs for America’s Graduates, in a Board. Charisse Childers, Ph.D., Wright-McMurray at [email protected]
special Leadership Awards ceremony, Director of the Arkansas Department
honored Marylene Tate with the of Career Education, represented arkansas.gov.
Career Education and Workforce
Hugh McDonald, Chairman, Little Rock
Senior Management Team Gina Radke, Vice Chairman, Sherwood
Adam Arroyos, Ph.D., Fayetteville
Jerry Cash, Ed.D., Harrison
Charisse Childers, Ph.D., Director Scott Copas, Little Rock
Lorna Claudio, Chief Financial Officer Michael Garner, Hensley
Stacy Gunderman, Batesville
Otis Dixon, Chief Information Officer Trenia Miles, Ed.D., Deputy Director Troy Keeping, Marion
Chip McAfee, Assistant Director of Bridget Bullard Criner, Associate Director Steve Percival, Little Rock
Communications Jenifer Price, Springdale
DeCarlia Smith, Human Resources Jeff Standridge, Ed.D., Conway
Administrator Keith Vire, Ph.D., Fayetteville
Don Bellcock, Internal Auditor Burton Weis, Fort Smith
D. Alan McClain, Commissioner
Joseph Baxter, Deputy Commissioner Ex-Officio Members
Carl Daughtery, Chief of Field Services/ Richard Abernathy, Ed.D., Executive
Associate Commissioner Director, AR Association of Educational
Jonathan Bibb, Administrator/Associate Administrators
Commissioner, Arkansas Career Training Daryl Bassett, Director, AR Department
Cody Waits, Deputy Director Institute of Workforce Services
Stephanie Isaacs, Associate Director James McCune, Chief Financial Officer Paul Beran, Ph.D., Chancellor, UA Fort
Nathan Winter, Associate Commissioner Smith
Johnny Key, Commissioner, AR
for Access & Accommodations Department of Education
Robert Treviño, Associate Commissioner Maria Markham, Ph.D., Director, AR
for Program, Planning Development & Department of Higher Education
Kathi Turner, Deputy Director Evaluation Mike Preston, Director, AR Economic
Cheryl Wiedmaier, Ph.D., Associate Judy Smith, Transition Director of Special Development Commission
Director Projects Bill Stovall, Executive Director, AR
Sonja Wright-McMurray, Associate Rodney Chandler, Director of Business Community Colleges
Director for Special Programs Engagement
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
501-317-1390 Texarkana CAREER AND TECHNICAL EDUCATION
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 ([email protected] 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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