The capital city welcomed about 40 student leaders from across the state Tuesday, February 7, for Legislative Shadow Day.
The students are officers of South Dakota’s Career and Technical Student Organizations, and the day’s activities, including an early-morning recognition breakfast, were a part of the state’s efforts to celebrate February as National Career and Technical Education Month.
Gov. Dennis Daugaard proclaimed Feb. 7 as Career and Technical Student Organization Day in South Dakota, in honor of the positive contributions the groups make to their communities and the state as a whole.
Mitchell Technical Institute SkillsUSA was represented by Amanda Brown an Agriculture Technology student from Madison. During the event, Brown received an up-close, inside look at the operations of state government, policy making and elected offices.
Brown had the opportunity to shadow Sen. Russell Olson, Wentworth, and Rep. Patricia Stricherz, Madison.
On Monday evening the Lieutenant Governor Michels took time and presented the bill making process in each house of the legislator and the reasons we should be involved in the process.
On Tuesday Secretary of Education Schopp spoke on how important the CTSO’s are to the development of students and Governor Daugaard took time to address the students, and provided them with a question an answer session of his thoughts and desired outcomes for South Dakota and its future.
“Many of these student leaders will become leaders within their communities,” said Tiffany Sanderson with the South Dakota Department of Education. “This is a great opportunity for them to gain experience and spark that interest.”
More than 96 percent of the students participating in career and technical education programs go on to graduate from high school. Of those graduates who took part in career and technical education programs, 76 percent continue on to post-secondary education in either a two- or four-year program.
There are nearly 700 career and technical education programs in more than 130 South Dakota school districts. CTE equips students with core academic skills and the ability to apply those skills to concrete situations; employability skills, such as critical thinking and responsibility; and technical skills related to specific career pathways.