A CTE construction student using a saw

Category : Innovation and Technology

So What’s the Problem?

Monday , November 15 , 2021

What comes to mind when you think of technology? 

Often, the first thoughts include computers, machines, and information. Would it surprise you to know that there are as many types of technology as there are problems to solve in the world? Miriam Webster defines technology as the use of science in industry, engineering, etc. to invent useful things or to solve problems. PVSchools is dedicated to creating world-class thinkers. Career and Technical Education also equips students to be world-class problem solvers.  

Of the top 50 jobs in America for 2021 as listed by popular jobsite glassdoor, half are considered traditional technology jobs, while the rest are related to healthcare and business technologies. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics agrees, but also adds entertainment industry jobs to its list of the top 20 fastest-growing occupations between 2020-2030.

The growth in these areas is tied directly to problems created during the COVID-19 pandemic. The need for new applications and additional security on the internet as we push toward working and learning remotely, new and increased health care needs, the reopening of entertainment industries, and rapid growth in Arizona are all creating exciting challenges in the workplace.

A CTE construction student using a drill on wall framing.To answer this call, PVSchools CTE has introduced two new programs for the 2021-22 school year and expanded others. Construction Technologies, offered at both Paradise Valley and North Canyon High Schools, gives students the opportunity to look into every aspect of the growing construction industry. According to 2020 U.S. Census Bureau data, Phoenix has grown to be the fifth-largest city in the country, as well as issuing the most building permits in the U.S., creating an immediate need for skilled workers.

North Canyon joins Paradise Valley in offering a Software and App Design program. Fueled by remote learning and working, a need for increased productivity and mobile ability is a predominant problem in almost every industry. In 2021, students in this program earned 121 individual industry certifications putting them ahead of others in both the pursuit of a degree or entry into the workplace right after graduation. 

Lastly, Pinnacle High School launched a Sports Medicine program that will prepare students to follow a path to careers in physical therapy, sports fitness, and sports injury medicine, all careers landing in the Occupational Outlook Handbook’s fastest-growing areas. Students in this program apply the skills they learn in class by working as assistant trainers during school sporting events.  

With 22 individual programs offered at PVSchools high schools, CTE students enjoy a head start on a path toward the fastest-growing careers in the country. These courses focus on more than curriculum, and skills. They bring industry into the classroom and make students a part of the solutions to today’s most pressing problems. 


This article was written by Rebecca MacGowan, director of CTE, and Lisa Baker, CTE coach.

PVSchools would like to thank West-MEC for their generosity to CTE, which allows the district to outfit all of our programs with proper equipment. The CTE program is given a grant each year from West-MEC specifically for industry-recognized equipment. Without this grant, the district would not be able to run our programs. In addition to that support, this year, PVSchools received a New Program grant for the Construction Technologies class at Paradise Valley High School. That grant, along with money received from the trade-in allowance of equipment from our previous Cabinetmaking program, is what has made the Construction lab possible. Last year, PVSchools was given a Special Projects grant from West-MEC, which allowed the district to put up the beautiful awning outside of our Automotives Lab at Paradise Valley High School.