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San Juan Unified high schools showcase CTE programs at annual expo

San Juan Unified hosted its annual Career and Technical Education (CTE) Expo at the Citrus Heights Community Center on Nov. 16, giving eighth-grade students the chance to check out each of the pathways offered at all of the district's high schools.

“We make the expo an opportunity to show our eighth-grade students the many options available to them,” said Brett Wolfe, director of adult education and school to career. “We hold the annual expo prior to the closing of open enrollment in the event a student may want to attend the school where there is a pathway they are interested in taking classes.”

The expo featured several booths staffed with current high school students to provide examples and demonstrations of the various pathways. There were students taking blood pressure and showing CPR skills from the healthcare pathways offered at Casa Roble Fundamental High School and Rio Americano High School, students demonstrating building and construction skills from Encina Preparatory High School, Rio Americano High School and Del Campo High School’s construction pathways, and even stage makeup demonstrations and performances by Mesa Verde High School’s professional theater pathway. 

Navigating the crowd of students and the nearly 30 pathways offered, Arden Middle School eighth-grader Katie Sue Amerine said she attended the expo to gain a better understanding of what each high school offers. 

“I wanted to see what other career choices and job opportunities are offered besides the ones that are available at my home high school,” said Amerine. “It’s been exciting to see all the classes offered today!”

In an effort to ensure the expo was available to all district students, buses were provided throughout to shuttle students to and from the event. The community and parents were also invited to attend during the afternoon open house. 

“My favorite part of today has been the acting and film booths, and I also really liked the cooking and baking information, and have an interest in the culinary field,” said eighth-grader Malia Romias. “I’m leaning toward attending El Camino High School so I was happy to be able to see what they offer.” 

Wolfe said he hopes the event will benefit incoming students with all of the CTE programs being available in one place for younger students to consider, as November and December is the time for students to begin choosing their high schools.

“As a whole, we have very successful, robust pathways that will prepare students for many opportunities upon graduating from high school,” said Wolfe.

For more information on CTE or pathways offered, visit www.sanjuan.edu/CTE. To learn more about San Juan Unified’s open enrollment period, open from Dec. 5 through Jan. 20, visit www.sanjuan.edu/openenrollment.