Career and Technical Education Month
In honor of Career and Technical Education Month, a public awareness campaign takes place each February to celebrate the value of CTE and the accomplishments of CTE programs across the country. I would like to recognize all of our outstanding CTE educators and students for making a difference in the world.
Each month, FLVS CTE will focus on a different soft skill that is essential for today’s students as they enter college or the workforce. This month’s focus is communication.
My daughter received the board game Speak Out for Christmas. For those of you who haven’t played, it’s an entertaining game. You wear a mouthpiece, draw a card, and then you read aloud what is on the card. The other person or team will try to guess what you’re saying. You can only imagine how difficult it is to communicate using a mouthpiece!
That game made me think about how important communication skills are. It’s one of the top soft skills required by employers. Hiring managers say communication skills can make or break the interview process.
As we all know, teenagers have their own lingo when it comes to texting with their friends or being on social media – and that lingo isn’t appropriate everywhere. Understanding the difference between colloquial language and professional communication is what sets apart potential employees. Here are some important communication skills that can help students stand out during interviews with potential colleges and employers:
- Know your audience
- Think before you speak
- Have a positive attitude
- Body language is important
One of the benefits of CTE courses here at FLVS is that we put a lot of emphasis on strong communication along with technological know-how. You might think it’s difficult to teach good communication skills online and in a career and technical classroom, but our students continuously have one on one conversations with the instructors. They send emails and written assessments digitally. These interactions regularly and deliberately reinforce communication skills.
Not only do students learn how to write resumes and cover letters in Digital Information Technology, they also learn how to proof-read and collaborate with their peers during exciting live lessons. Foundations of Programming is another course we offer here at FLVS. There, students learn how to develop computer programs using the programming language Python. Not only do they learn the hard skill of coding, they also learn how to analyze their product and communicate to their teacher what they learned during the process.
Think about ways you can reinforce these real world skills with your child at home.