Stephanie Robinson, administrator of the Career Tech Academy (CTA) at the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center (SVHEC), recognizes the importance of such a career cluster for area students.

To that end, SVHEC invited speakers during Careers in Energy Week to draw attention to the wide range of opportunities CTA students could find in the energy field.

Remy Pangle, director of the Center for the Advancement of Sustainable Energy at James Madison University, Katherine Dorman, manager of Human Resources for Columbia Gas of Virginia, and Pam Taylor, Fast Forward career coach for Southside Virginia Community College (SVCC), each gave presentations, focusing on wind and alternative energy and education/employment opportunities in the energy sector.

Continued activities throughout the week had students researching energy careers and creating Powerpoints with career projections, education and training needed, job availability by region and annual income.

Careers in Energy Week activities culminated in the CTA entering into the 2020 Get Into Energy Innovation Challenge sponsored by the Virginia Energy Workforce and Virginia Chamber Foundation in which students will tackle a sustainability-related energy challenge designed by industry partners from January through March. Student teams will present their solutions at a Shark Tank style Competition in March in Richmond.

For more information on the Career Tech Academy, contact Stephanie Robinson, CTA administrator, at 434-572-5497 or stephanierobinson@svhec.org, or Debra Woltz, CTE coordinator for Halifax County Public Schools, at 434-575-2013 or dwoltz@halifax.k12.va.us.