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Community College and Workforce Development


Career Technical Education (CTE) provides students of all ages with the academic and technical skills, knowledge, and training necessary to succeed in future careers and to become lifelong learners.  CTE prepares these learners for the world of work by introducing them to workplace competencies and making academic content accessible to students by providing it in a hands-on context.  Oregon's 17 Community Colleges.

CTE is a proven strategy that expands options for learners, empowers them to choose meaningful and sustainable career-focused coursework.  CTE is learning that works for Oregon's students - and its economy.  ​​View the State of Oregon Employment Department for more information.

Partnership Between the HECC Office of Community Colleges and Workforce Development (CCWD) and Oregon's Community Colleges

The Office of Community Colleges and Workforce Development (CCWD), administered by the Higher Education Coordinating Commission, works in partnership with the Oregon Department of Education (ODE) to coordinate the postsecondary education of career and technical education programs supported by the "Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act​" (Perkins V).

Postsecondary Career and Technical Education (CTE)

Postsecondary CTE encompasses a broad range of technical and academic instruction offered at Oregon's community colleges that prepare students for the workplace, further education, training, and family & community roles. Students may earn Associate degrees and/or a Certificate of Completion. The Higher Education Coordinating Commission (HECC) and CCWD provide leadership for community colleges. CTE helps Oregonians gain the skills, technical knowledge, academic foundation, and real-world experience needed to prepare for high-skill, high-demand, and high-wage careers.

Postsecondary CTE Programs of Study offer a​cademic and career-oriented courses to gain work experience, job shadowing, on-the-job training, and industry certification opportunities.  In addition, they also provide for alignment and articulation with local high school instruction, integrate technical career skill proficiencies with academic content, work-based learning and apprenticeships. 

CTE is organized by a national framework called "Career Clusters", which presents a complete range of related career options to students of all ages, helps them discover their interests and passions, and to choose the education pathway that can lead to success in high school, college, and their chosen career.  These clusters are found within the six career learning areas of the Oregon Skill Sets​.