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Education that Works

Got a knack for the technical or just want to hop on the fast track to a promising hands-on career or college program?

Published in the January 2023 Issue Published online: Jan 05, 2023 Education And Arts
Viewed 560 time(s)

By Steve Smede

Got a knack for the technical or just want to hop on the fast track to a promising hands-on career or college program? In Greater Idaho Falls, programs abound at College of Eastern Idaho as well as within the Idaho Falls and Bonneville school districts.

College of East Idaho

Founded in 1969 as a vocation/technical school, this gem of a community college has expanded to include liberal arts curricula. (Its academic “associate of arts” and “associate of science” degrees can transfer directly to a 4-year university.) It still has trade-based education in its DNA, however. Divisions of coursework range from business and industry to a myriad of health professions, technical trades and workforce training.

Regarding the latter, the big news from CEI in late 2022 is the college’s new Eastern Idaho Workforce Training Center (EIWTC), which was unveiled in September.

“We are teaching a lot of construction classes there from beginning Construction Basics to the full-on building of “tiny homes” with the company Ty’s Tiny Homes,” noted Angel Hays, CEI’s Executive Director for Workforce Training. “Other bays are opening soon for companies to rent for a month or a year to do training or projects in.”

CEI also recently put together a Saturday training program for homeowners, or those living alone for the first time. “It is a Saturday course that covers basic electric–changing light switches etc., basic plumbing and general repairs like patching drywall,” Hays added. “There are a lot of great courses starting in January!”

Contract or on-demand training is also available, featuring a cadre of professional instructors in hundreds of areas.

“All a company needs to do is call us, explain the areas they need training in and we can create that customized training directly to their needs,” Hays said.

CEI offers an impressive 11:1 student-to-teacher ratio and a 94% positive placement rate. It is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities. Best of all, the college has tight working relationships with some of the area’s largest employers, including industrial fabrication companies, major hospitals and the Idaho National Laboratory.

If you’re already well into your chosen profession, CEI also has a full suite of Continuing Education courses, as well as course bundles for Administrative Assistant and Program Management.

Career Technical Education Center/ CTEC

A product of Idaho Falls School District #91’s Career and Technical Education program, CTEC offers specialized courses high school students in Idaho Falls as well as other districts served by the Eastern Idaho Cooperative Service Agency (EICSA), which covers Firth, Shelley and Ririe. The program center is located downtown in the old Deseret Industries store at 450 E Street. Automotive courses are held at Idaho Falls High School Transportation Building room WS6.

Of special note is the CTE Advanced Opportunities program, which links approved high school career-technical programs to certificate and degree programs at a technical college.

CTE areas of study and training include agriculture and natural resources, culinary arts, hospitality, CPR training, education para-professionals and more. Its business/ technology programs are especially popular, with dedicated courses in programming and cybersecurity.

Bonneville Technical Careers High School

This dedicated vocational offering from Bonneville Joint School District 93 is located just a stone’s throw west of Bonneville High School in Ammon. Its Career and Technical Education programs run the gamut from ecology and natural resource studies to animal science, business management and digital communications.

The school also has a robust training program for welding, automotive technology and collision repair, as well as accredited paraprofessional certification for a broad range of healthcare careers, including nursing assistance, EMT training, medical assisting and child development.

Other hands-on training programs include residential construction, cabinetry millwork and culinary.


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