Welding program expansion part of county technical center’s future | News

The rapidly approaching 50th anniversary of the Crawford County Career and Technical Center — the facility formerly known as, and still often called, the “Vo-Tech” — sounds like a good reason to look to the past, but the school’s leaders are more interested in looking to the future. 

Director Kevin Sprong and Mike Costa, assistant director, have a vision for the center’s coming decades that builds on the foundation of the past half-century. Seated around a conference table at the center, the two men painted a picture of the future they would like to see for the school — one that includes continued expansion of both programs and facilities.

A major first step in forging that vision is already underway as the school prepares to launch a satellite location for the welding program beginning this fall at Conneaut Valley Middle School.

“Five to 10 years down the road, we would love to have potentially two career and tech centers for all the students of Crawford County,” Sprong said.

“That’s a vision,” he added, clarifying that no concrete plans for a second center currently exist.

“It’s pretty ambitious,” Costa admitted.

“It is, it is,” Sprong agreed, “but we feel very strongly about providing the opportunity to allow more students that want to pursue a career in career and technical education to be able to do that.”

The arc of supply and demand

The school’s robust menu of offerings already goes a long way toward providing such opportunities, with 17 programs for high school students, a practical nursing program for adults and numerous additional evening and online offerings for adults.

Still, the school has not been able to satisfy the existing demand for all of its programs. The high school welding program is undoubtedly “Exhibit A” when it comes to high demand, according to…

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