BILLERICA, MA — Shawsheen Valley Technical High School guidance counselor Angela Caira considers the school’s annual Community Open House on Sunday, Nov. 5 a win-win situation for people that are interested in the school.
“There’s no Pats game,” Caira laughed, noting the Patriots are on a bye week.
After all, Shawsheen’s 22 Career Vocational Technical Education programs will be on display, teachers and coaches will be in attendance, there will be experiments and demonstrations featuring student work.
The Community Open House will run from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the school on Cook Street in Billerica. It’s a way for prospective students, parents, friends and relatives to come see what’s new at Shawsheen.
“This is an awesome opportunity for people to learn about one of the educational options in their area,” Caira said. “If you’re curious, you owe it to yourself to come check it out. It’s worth finding out if it’s for you.”
“Our educational model promotes students’ active engagement in their vocational-technical learning through hands-on participation in our exploratory program,” said Jobee O’Sullivan, Director of Guidance and Admissions.
“A lot of people apply right on the spot,” Caira said. “Your education is one of the biggest decisions you’re ever going to make… it’s good to open yourself up to different opportunities.”
O’Sullivan said, “Career Technical Education is a viable choice for students who want to explore their options or wish to pursue a specific career pathway and want to experience it beforehand. It enables them to make an informed decision to go directly into the field, pursue higher education, or embark on a military future to enhance their foundation of skills.”
Tammy Bicknell of Billerica has had three children attend Shawsheen and admits, the Community Open House went a long way in helping her family come to the decision to attend the school.
“The Open House helped a lot,” said Bicknell. “It gave my children an overview of exactly what Shawsheen offered. It was able to give them a hands-on type of feel.”
“The teachers are amazing,” she said. “Even when your child goes through a variety of shops, the teachers still know your child’s name. That’s how close they get with the students. My three children have grown leaps and bounds going to Shawsheen.”
Bicknell has a recent 2016 Culinary Arts graduate, a current senior in Business Technology and a sophomore in Health Assisting.
“I have never had a day where they have not wanted to go to school,” added Bicknell. “It’s always positive feedback.”
Attendees of the Community Open House can visit the school’s restaurant, bakery, full-service salon, Automotive Departments, and student operated school store. All are open to the public during the school day. Visitors will have the opportunity to see how the admissions process works and learn all about the valuable cooperative education programs, which provides students a unique opportunity to be employed in their field of study as juniors and seniors in high school.
“It’s open to anyone in the community, actually,” Caira said. “We have all of the information available for people that want to educate themselves about the Shawsheen experience.”
(NOTE: The above press release is from the Shawsheen Tech.)