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Chamber Spotlight: Charlottesville Albemarle Technical Education Center (CATEC)

CATEC Building Trades sq

Charlottesville Albemarle Technical Education Center (CATEC)
Charlottesville, VA

Shared by Stephanie Carter, Director. You can reach Stephanie at or call CATEC at 434.973.4461. Find CATEC on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @CATEChighschool

What does your organization do?
CATEC is a career and technical education school where high school and adult students come to learn a trade and get prepared to enter the workforce. We offer courses in automotive technology, building trades, electricity, medical sciences, culinary arts, and cosmetology.

What's the most important thing you want people to know about your organization?
CATEC is preparing future skilled-trades employees through hands-on training, credentialing, and workplace readiness education to enter the workforce ready to work and fill critical staffing shortages locally and regionally.

Tell us about something new and exciting your organization is doing.
CATEC has launched an academic integration program that embeds academics right into trades classes! For example, next year, Geometry will be taught alongside Building Trades. By showing students where the academic content lives in the trade, we are increasing relevance, access, and deepening understanding. If you are building a house, you are using lots of math!

Tell us about one of your recent success stories.
Even in a pandemic, we had ten students sign with local companies to take full-time positions. All positions offered a wage above the living-wage threshold, benefits, and room for advancement. And… not a single student entered their career with student debt.

What services or products do you offer?
Skilled trade education, certifications, workplace readiness training, and connections to possible job opportunities.

What makes your organization stand out?
CATEC has offered career and technical education to our community for almost 50 years. We have helped countless people pursue careers they love and carve out nice lives for themselves. The work we do here helps the overall community, but even more it supports individuals who provide essential, frontline work.

What accomplishments are you most proud of?
The number of people CATEC trained who provided frontline support during the pandemic and, through incredible circumstances, cemented their status as essential workers in our community.

What else do you want us to know?
CATEC is always seeking to make connections with local businesses to provide a pipeline for our students when they have finished their program with us. If you ever wonder how many students have been trained at CATEC, just ask a tradesperson that comes to your home, very often, they have been to CATEC.

What Chamber benefits do you appreciate as a member?
Making connections with local businesses that may benefit from the programming we offer at CATEC.

Would you recommend Chamber membership to others? What would you tell them?
Yes. The networking alone is worth the price of membership. From one "Let's Connect" event, I have 2 meetings set-up and am doing this spotlight!