Industry partners given top awards from CareerTech

Apache Tribe Vocational Rehabilitation Partners for Progress Photo
Ereca Camero, Director and Sheila Perez, Senior ATVR Counselor. Standing are Darrin Cisco, Cultural Specialist; Meakah Komardley, ATVR Counselor 2; Keith Tampkins, OKDRS/ATVR Counselor; and Patrick Tointigh, Technician.

Caddo Kiowa Technology Center nominates the Apache Tribe Vocational Rehabilitation for Partners for Progress award

The Oklahoma Association for Technology Centers recognized top industry partners for training and employing thousands of Oklahoma workers through CareerTech this past Wednesday at the annual Partners for Progress awards ceremony. 

Caddo Kiowa Tech Center honored the Apache Tribe Vocational Rehabilitation as the 2019 Partners for Progress award recipient because of their commitment to advancing career technical education. By using CKTC’s programs, ATVR is ensuring better lives and career choices for their clients. What’s more the partnership shows an exemplary dedication to workforce excellence and education in the communities that both agencies serve.

Thousands of workers trained and employed through CareerTech partnerships with industry

State secretary for commerce, Sean Kouplen, who was on hand to congratulate award recipients said, “Partners for Progress represents a powerful alliance between CareerTech and employers to train Oklahomans and put them to work in quality jobs.  Last year alone, almost 7,000 organizations took advantage of CareerTech training resulting in more than 350,000 enrollments statewide.  That is a powerful step toward building a top ten state with skilled workers.”

The Apache Tribe Vocational Rehabilitation Services was very progressive in instituting the program in 1992, as tribal leaders saw the need for culturally relevant services for American Indians with disabilities. Since inception, the ATVR has worked with CKTC for a variety of training needs.  Many clients have completed career training from full-time programs such as Business Information Technology Education, Welding and Metal Fabrication, Digital Imaging and Printing and Practical Nursing to name a few.

Most recently the staff at ATVR reached out to Shawn Freie, CKTC Small Business Coordinator, for assistance with clients who were interested in business development. This resulted in the first of its kind, small business start-up guide specifically designed for tribal clients. With such progressive thinking and CKTC’s desire for industry servitude came discussions of customized training for tribal members. This led to the partnership with Adult and Continuing Education Coordinator Laci McCool. The needs of the ATVR, coupled with knowledgeable industry training, brought about the Apache Life and Employability Readiness Training program.

Not only career training but also resume building and life skills

The ALERT program is a comprehensive skills-based program developed and instituted for the clients of the vocational rehabilitation program.  Clients are required to attend the skills training as part of the service benefits received. Classes are conducted every month at the tribal complex and include but are not limited to financial literacy, job preparedness, completion of OK Career guide, resume building and cover letter design,  employability soft skills, life skills, time management and goal setting.

In short, the ATVR came to CKTC for assistance with creating a small business book and gained a valuable partnership of training, education and support to better serve those in the community.

Superintendent Tony Hancock said, “Apache Tribe Vocational Rehabilitation has been very progressive in instituting and promoting programs that help their citizens.  Caddo Kiowa Technology Center is extremely proud to partner with Apache Tribe Vocational Rehabilitation to provide needed training that supports both individuals and businesses in our district.”

For over half a century, CKTC has provided career training, business and industry services and leadership programs to a rural district in southwest Oklahoma. Opportunities at CKTC range from business and health to science and transportation trades. Additionally, CKTC offers customized workplace training and short-term training. More information about CKTC is available online at or by calling 405.643.5511. CKTC is a proud member of the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education, which provides leadership and resources and assures standards of excellence for a comprehensive statewide system of career and technology education. The system offers programs and services in 29 technology center districts.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

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