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Reaching a milestone

This year marks 40 years since LeCroy Career/Technical Center first opened its doors to the public in 1969.

The center’s director, Tommy Glasscock, has good reason to believe in career/tech education. As a former student of the center, he went on to teach there for 14 years before becoming director.

“We’ve been in it through thick and thin,” Glasscock said. “We’ve got to get kids ready to go to work or attend college — one or the other.”

When the center first opened in 1969, it offered automotive service technology, business/marketing, collision repair, drafting/design, electronics, heating/ventilation/AC and refrigeration, and welding technology.

Courses added since the school’s inception are construction, cosmetology, health science, horticulture, masonry, and ELL classes.

“Our goal for 2009 is to make a stronger connection with business and industry,” Glasscock said.

The school has already made strides in that direction by providing state-of-the-art equipment such as CNC machinery. CNC stands for “Computerized Numerical Controls,” which means the machine can be programmed to cut out precise pieces from materials such as wood.

Projects on the horizon for LeCroy include a small fish hatchery in the Horticulture Department, adding a student-operated store in the Business Department in which snacks and related items will be sold, and a stronger focus on medical internships.

The center is also preparing to open its new conference center on site.

“Chairs are supposed to be here next week,” Glasscock said.

February is National Career/Tech Education Month, and LeCroy is planning an open house to commemorate this important month as well as the school’s 40-year milestone. This year’s theme will be “Building Blocks for a Successful Career.”

During the month, high school sophomores will tour the center to decide what programs they want to attend by seeing other students in action.

High school seniors will attend the College/Career Fair at Clanton First United Methodist’s Helen Parrish Activity Center, where they will talk to representatives from colleges and universities. All branches of the military will be represented there as well.

This event will be held in addition to the annual job fair hosted by LeCroy in partnership with local businesses.

Times and dates for these events will be announced at a later date.

For more information, please call LeCroy at 280-2920.