Technology keeps students connected to industry, trades

Students from several CiTi Career and Technical Education programs have stayed connected with trade schools and industry professionals virtually.

Rusty Stetzel, a Branch Manager for Penn Power Group, came up with the idea to help students stay connected with the workforce and trade schools before forming a task force that included CiTi administrators, teachers and staff.

“These calls are to help us stay in contact and continue to engage the future workforce with potential employers during this time,” Stetzel said during one of the initial calls, noting his company “is always looking for students coming from area BOCES.”

Those on the calls to help answer student questions and speak about various facets of their work included professionals from the fields of heavy equipment, trucking, manufacturing, trade schools and more.

“We are incredibly thankful for the years and years of experience that was able to join the calls for our students,” said CiTi CTE Business Education Liaison Garrette Weiss. “They gained valuable insight about the fields they’re interested in, the next steps and what a career in that field looks like.”

There were multiple calls per week as the effort included virtual calls via Zoom with CiTi, Cayuga-Onondaga BOCES and Rochester-area students.

Some senior students who are graduating in June also utilized this as an opportunity to network, gaining some contacts in their various fields to help with the next steps.