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Spring ISD CTE Department Recognizes 2019 'Best in District' Career Awareness Project Winners

March 1, 2019 - As February’s Career Awareness Month observances come to a close, Spring ISD’s Career and Technical Education (CTE) Department honored students whose individual poster artwork, personal essays and poetry had been selected “Best in District” in the 2019 Career Awareness Poster and Project Contest.

Students throughout Spring ISD were invited to turn their creative talents toward works highlighting career awareness and their own goals for the future. At the elementary level, students created posters around the theme “When I Grow Up I Dream to Be…” while middle school and high school students had the option of submitting posters, poems or essays highlighting their own planned “Roadmap” or “Pathway to Success.” Teachers also had a chance to participate by creating inspirational murals or displays in their classrooms to encourage students to dream big and plan for their future.

“February is Career Awareness Month,” said Cynthia Williams, Spring ISD’s director of career and technical education, “and we take the opportunity to expose students to career awareness and career pathways and encourage them to think about what they might want to be when they grow up. We do it every day as part of our job, but we put special emphasis on it during the month of February.”

A longstanding Spring ISD tradition, the annual poster and project contest has grown in recent years as the CTE department has sought ways to integrate the event with new areas of the curriculum.

“It used to just be a poster contest,” Williams explained, “and then three years ago we decided that we wanted to help support literacy, so we added the essay and the poetry options for the middle and high schools. Any student can participate, and it’s a way for CTE to support writing and getting kids to write. CTE supports literacy!”

Projects were submitted earlier in February, with the winning pieces from each campus proceeding on to the district-level judging. On Friday, a team of Spring ISD administrators and CTE counselors traveled across the district to surprise students and teachers whose contributions had been chosen for this year’s top honors.

“This is the fun part of the job,” Williams said, “when we get to come out and visit the campuses and celebrate with the students. And of course the kids get excited because we always give the district winners a really cool prize.”

In addition to a certificate and congratulatory balloons, this year’s winners each received a Fujifilm instant camera bundle.

This year’s winning students include:*

  • Poster, Elementary School - Gustavo Rodriguez (Eickenroht Elementary, Grade 3)
  • Poster, Middle School - Noelani Shai (Twin Creeks Middle School, Grade 6)
  • Poster, High School – An Nguyen (Spring High School, Grade 11)
  • Poetry, Middle School - Nosakhare Iyoha (Bailey Middle School, Grade 8)
  • Poetry, High School - Jeffrey Ngo (Westfield High School, Grade 12)
  • Essay, High School - Uzochi Jack Emeghara (Westfield High School, Grade 11)

Teachers honored for displays and murals they created for their classrooms are: Deandrea Cooper, Westfield High School; David Almanzan, Dekaney High School;  Kendra Lee, Bailey MIddle School; Brooke Pipher, Wells Middle School; and Louis Miller, Roberson Middle School.

According to Williams, the poster and project contest, although always a big event, is complemented by other activities throughout February.

“We actually had activities going on all throughout the month to promote career awareness with our students,” she said. “We had our Career Connection event and career days at our schools, just a number of opportunities for students to explore careers and develop career preparedness. But the contest is definitely a highlight.”

*Note: The middle school essay contest winner’s name has been withheld since the student had not been notified as of publication time.