HANCEVILLE, ALA. – Noah Henderson can’t wait to begin his collegiate career in Wallace State’s Engineering Technology program after he graduates high school.
Meanwhile, Quenton Karlberg, 58, is impressed with the diverse set of students he sees in Wallace State’s HVAC/Refrigeration program.
Both Henderson and Karlberg attended and participated in Wallace State’s recent 3rd annual Career and Technical Letter of Intent Signing Day ceremony, confirming their intentions to join the college in their respective programs.
“This is an exciting event. It makes you feel welcome and gives you a chance to meet new people who are interested in the same things you are,” said Henderson, from Cold Springs.
“Once I became interested in HVAC, I watched the program video and fell in love with it. I love the structure of the classroom and how hands-on the program is for students. It’s also great how there are four generations of people collaborating and working together towards the same goal, whether it’s the instructors or students. It’s a great dynamic,” Karlberg said.
Modeled after an athletics signing, the event allowed incoming students in the summer or fall to officially secure their commitment to Wallace State in their respective Applied Technologies programs. Wallace State’s Applied Technologies Department joined other colleges across the country by celebrating Signing Day in acknowledgment of National Career Technical Education (CTE) Month through the National Coalition of Certification Centers (NC3).
Wallace State welcomed approximately 50 students to the event, setting yet again a new mark in the event’s attendance. Students on hand committed to join the following Wallace State programs: agricultural production/horticulture, diesel technology, electronics technology, engineering technology, HVAC/refrigeration, machine tool technology, and salon and spa management.
“We are excited to have all of these students here, and I hope they savor the moment. This event grows in popularity more and more and it’s because the demand for skilled labor is at an all-time high. We are getting calls every day from companies wanting to hire our students. I’m glad these students have decided to choose a career in a technical field. This will make a huge impact on their lives. It’s a life-changing decision,” said Jimmy Hodges, Wallace State’s Dean of Applied Technologies. “I’m also excited about the parents who attended today. This is one of the best parental support groups I’ve seen.”
Wallace State President Dr. Vicki Karolewics addressed the crowd at the outset of the event, welcoming the students and citing the accomplishments of the college.
“Thank you for choosing us, and thank you for letting us be a part of your life and your story. Today is the beginning of the story that will define you. We are glad you are here,” Karolewics said.
Representatives from Snap-On, one of Wallace State’s industry partners, were also on hand for the ceremony.
Each incoming student was recognized individually, signing with their respective programs as their future instructors looked on. Students received a Wallace State hat upon signing and had the opportunity to tour their department on campus.
The letters the students signed stated: “I, the undersigned student, understand that with this Letter of Intent I am occupying one of the very limited training openings in this technology education program and I am committed to successful completion of this program. I understand I will be trained to work in a highly-technical occupation and I will graduate workplace ready.”
You can watch the Signing Day video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EpkmJo27PYE
For more information about Wallace State, visit www.wallacestate.edu.
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