For many years, public schools have offered a few Career and Technical Education (CTE) classes, but they were often regarded as an afterthought, overshadowed by traditional academic courses. That perception is changing, and it’s taking shape along with a stunning new building in Durango.
Under the guidance of forward-thinking Superintendent Dr. Karen Cheser, Durango School District 9-R is on a mission to revamp its CTE program and set students up for success in the modern world. Cheser believes that every student should have the opportunity to explore their Ikigai (“ee-key-GAI”), a Japanese term that means finding the “sweet spot” that melds what you are good at, what you love, what the world needs, and what you can be paid for. The district’s new approach to CTE allows students to pursue their passions and gain practical skills that will lead to meaningful careers.
With the support of the school board and the community’s approval of Bond 4A in November of 2020, the district secured funding to build a new structure for the outdated CTE facilities at Durango High School. Drivers on Main Avenue may have noticed the rapid construction of the modern building on the northwest side of Durango High School’s campus. Impact - Career Innovation Center will include sustainable design features, modern workshops, computer labs, and studios equipped with cutting-edge technology and tools. The once-neglected CTE classes will now be given a new home and the attention they deserve.
At the Impact-CIC, students will choose from a dynamic range of programming that empowers them to take charge of their educational journey, including:
The Impact CIC is located on the Durango High School campus, a central hub for innovation and growth at 2390 Main Avenue. The building’s expected opening is from late fall 2023 to early winter 2024. The community will be invited to a Grand Opening Celebration.
Through visionary leadership, community collaboration, and a commitment to excellence, CTE students will be set on a trajectory toward fulfilling careers, proving that the future belongs to those who combine passion with practical skills.