The drills were loud, and the hammers were ringing nails into freshly cut wood on Wednesday morning. The West Point School District Career and Technology Center sounded like a construction site, and in effect it really was.
Students from the CTC’s Construction class were putting together a shelving project that is part of the application stage of the program’s first-year class.
“When they leave here, they have some basic skills,” said the class instructor Scott Hudson. “That is everything from industrial safety, to hand tools to power tools. They have a set of skills when they come out.”
After completing the two-year program, students have the opportunity to get a NCCER Certification.
“That’s something contractors and construction companies are looking for,” said CTC Director Patrick Ray.
Ray says that the construction program does not just cover carpentry and wood related skills.
The students who complete the courses will come out with basic knowledge of plumbing and electricity.
“They will be very well-rounded when they get through,” Ray said.
Hudson says that in the introductory phase of the program, students are basically retaught basic mathematics skills.
“These are math skills that can be transferred to any type of industry,” Hudson said. “It relates to anything that involves a pencil and a 2x6 on a construction site.”
Hudson says that the skills accumulated in the coursework will transfer into the classroom and in to the workforce. Two of his students who are currently seniors at WPHS are currently enrolled in H-VAC courses at East Mississippi Community College.
Dustin Weeden and Ben McTaggert are currently taking community college courses in air condition repair because of the skills they accumulated in the CTC program.
This is yet another CTC program that is training and educating a viable workforce for Clay County.
A national certification is available to all who complete the two-year program if they choose to acquire it.
Next week, we’ll take a look inside of the CTC Early Childhood Development Program.