Natural resource management, guitar, game design, cybersecurity classes added this year

PMG FILE PHOTO - Sandy High School offers nine CTE programs of study, ranging in topics from manufacturing to computer science to art. Statistics from the Association for Career and Technical Education say the average graduation rate for students who concentrate on career and technical education is 93%. The same study also found that students who don't participate in CTE graduate at a rate of 80%.

Because of the correlation between student success and CTE participation, and several other reasons, Sandy High School aims to expand their CTE offerings each year.

At this point, Sandy offers classes in art production, automotive technology, business and management, computer science, digital design, engineering, health science, manufacturing technology and agriculture.

Last year the school offered 46 different courses. This year, students will be able to choose from 54 courses.

Multiple programs added new classes for this academic year, including the business, computer science and art production programs.

"By the time kids get to high school, more of the same isn't going to make them successful," said Ladine Marquardt Sandy High assistant principal. "We try to engage students by adding that aspect of relevance."

In the computer science department, the school now offers game design and cybersecurity classes.

"Game design is a healthy industry, especially in our area," Marquardt said. "Cybersecurity is another growing industry. What we want is to expose students to those skills that would be important in that industry. A lot of students get into computer science because of gaming anyway."

The art production program includes more studio art classes this year as well. Another new offering is guitar instruction, and a completely new class in natural resource management has been added in the sciences.

"We're looking at taking this and expanding it to offer a complete program of study," Marquardt said. The course will explore the importance of balancing recreational, environmental and economic aspects of wildlife in the area.

"We think this is an important way to get kids to think about their future at an early age," Marquardt said.

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