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Greenville County Schools Open CTE Innovation Center

Greenville County Schools celebrated the grand opening of their new Vocational and Technical Training Innovation Center September 20.

Floor plan

Opening scheduled for August 2023

The $12.7 million, 29,145 square foot facility is scheduled to open in August 2023 and will be located on the Roper Mountain Science Center Campus402 Roper Mountain Road, Greenville.

“The Innovation Center will be the first in the state to offer emerging automotive research and one of the few to offer aerospace technology, cybersecurity/networking, clean energy technology and automation. and robotics, all of which give students a competitive edge for the future workforce,” said Katie Porter, director of programs at the center.

The Innovation Center will cater to students interested in careers in science, technology, engineering and math, featuring real-world environments where students will learn problem solving and collaboration. While the other four CTE Centers serve students from nearby high schools, the Innovation Center will serve all high school students in Greenville County.

Photos courtesy of Greenville County Schools

The center will join four others in the vocational and technical training programme:

Porter said the professors they plan to hire will also have experience in the subject they teach.

“We’re listening to the industry,” she said, adding that she doesn’t anticipate the teacher shortage having much of an impact on the hiring process. “There is always someone looking to make a difference.”

Internships will be available

Students can drive to campus or they will have bus transportation. Porter said classes will be optional and integrated into the block schedule. In addition, students will take general education classes at their primary school.

Porter said the departments have connections to the Greenville County business community, so students may be able to intern at BMW, michelin or a number of local businesses in the STEM field.

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The programs available will prepare students for post-secondary education in two- and four-year schools, and they will get a feel for what it is like to participate in a global workforce. Students will also learn soft skills such as punctuality and behavior in a professional environment.

The center is just part of the “Graduation Plus” initiative that GCS has rolled out to give a boost to students entering the military, the workforce or higher education.

“This center is a perfect example of our Graduation Plus initiative, giving our students access to innovative pathways that will position them at the forefront of college and career readiness,” said Superintendent Burke Royster.

Opportunities available

Students in these programs will be able to pursue high-paying STEM careers such as:

  • Engineering (aerospace, automotive, civil, mechanical, software).
  • Programming.
  • Aviation.
  • Design.
  • Computer science.
  • To research.
  • Solar energy.
  • Analytic.
  • Development.
  • Technical solutions.

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