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Preparing Highly Employable Students

The Willis Independent School District will begin renovation work this summer to soon offer middle school students a new hands-on learning experience.

About three years ago, the district’s opened the Career and Technology Center at Willis High School. Now the district will provide a similar career and technical education at both Brabham and Lucas Middle School.


Willis ISD is continuing its commitment to develop well-rounded students who are ready for college or the workforce by bringing CTE course labs to all 8th grade students.

Willis ISD


The college and career Ready STEM labs are complete learning systems developed and managed by Paxton/Patterson, which the district described as a leading provider of classroom technology learning systems. The labs will introduce students to over 100 different careers in science, technology, engineering, and math areas alongside extensive college and career research in each area, the district stated.

The students will spend 10 days exploring the curriculum for each unit before rotating to the next year. There are a total of 16 units that the students will rotate through. Students will also analyze job growth, regional and national employment trends, salary expectations, required levels of study and/or training, and local and regional options for training/education for the specific careers they are researching.


“These work-based and problem-solving units will give students an opportunity to hone in on their interests and skills prior to entering high school so that they know which CTE Courses and careers they are most interested in while also preparing them for the high school CTE curriculum. Our students will be highly employable after going through the CTE track in our secondary schools.”

Travis Utecht, Director of Career & Technology Education


Units of study include: Computer Aided Drafting & Design, Digital Manufacturing, Digital Audio Production, Video Production, Energy & Power, Flight & Drone Technology, Forensic Science, Home Maintenance Fundamentals, Home Maintenance Systems, Intro to Computer Science, Intro to Health Science Careers, Intro to Culinary Arts, Pneumatics, Research & Development, Robotics, Veterinary Medicine. The goal behind this was to feed right into the CTE center at Willis High School and make it a seamless transition.


Information provided by:

Meagan Ellsworth

Staff Writer

The Courier of Montgomery County


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