As Warren County Career Center strengthens its ties with area businesses, it’s also helping students become part of a skilled workforce that businesses are looking to hire.

“People realize the value of career education across the board,” says Maggie Hess, superintendent of Warren County Career Center. 

Public Information Specialist of Warren County Career Center Peg Allen says that companies contact the Warren County Career Center, and that the institution helps to meet their needs for filling positions. 

“We are always responsive to businesses, the industry and the marketplace,” says Hess. 

By constantly updating its programs and curriculum, Warren County Career Center stays ahead of the changes in workplace needs. 

In the center’s automotive collision and automotive technology programs, the curriculum is updated as the design and build of vehicles changes. The advanced manufacturing curriculum has also undergone revision by updating its skill training in robotic programming, and hydraulic and pneumatic systems. 

In fact, the entire center is engaging itself as new technologies are introduced, ensuring its students are ahead of the game. 

According to Hess, placement rates for the career center fall between 85 to 90 percent and that the school regularly checks in with past students. 

Both high school students—which have gone on to attend area colleges like Sinclair Community College—and adult students are contacted by the career center. 

“It’s part of our accountability measures,” says Hess. “It helps us compete in a changing work world and have positive outcomes.” 

Some of these students are then recognized in the Warren County Career Center Hall of Fame. 

Warren County Career Center is also reaching out to area high schools to help students understand the possibility of career education. 

“I would ask them ‘Do you want to learn by doing?’” says Hess. “Career technology allows you to integrate career and educational skills and bring it to life. It’s active learning.”

Some of the popular questions advisors are asked include options, length of the programs, what credentials are received upon completion, cost and job opportunities. 

“I believe that, as an employer, qualified applicants are critical to the success of all businesses,” says Hess. “Warren County Career Center has the ability to impact and train a strong, qualified workforce.” 

Allen says that through the many programs offered, Warren County Career Center integrates professional skills like safety, dress code, customer service and more, alongside the skilled training. 

Though Warren County Career Center is teaching students skills they will use in future jobs, it’s also teaching them to give back. One example is high school students in the career center’s carpentry and heavy equipment programs that helped build the Rachel A. Hutzel Observatory at Camp Joy. Another example is the work students are doing to help Warren County Community Services finish homes for families and seniors. 

“We are teaching students how to give back and use their skills for service in the community,” says Hess. “We are not competing.” 

“It’s a learning experience,” adds Allen. 

The Warren County Career Center is also looking into opportunities for offering some intro classes in junior high schools. 

“Students will always be able to use the skills they learn here,” says Hess.