Strategies for Attracting Students to High-quality CTE


Advance CTE and the Siemens Foundation are working on a project, Strategies for Attracting Students to High-Quality CTE, which supports states and local communities across the country in their efforts to attract and recruit students into high-quality Career Technical Education (CTE) programs of study. This two-pronged approach will develop effective messaging to be used at the state and local level, as well as provide support to select states as they identify, pilot and evaluate strategies for recruiting students into high-quality CTE.
This project will leverage Advance CTE’s membership - state CTE directors and leaders from all 50 states - as well as CTE: Learning that works for America, a national campaign adopted by 49 states and over 700 communities, to ensure any resources and lessons learned are disseminated and implemented widely. The goal – provide effective recruitment strategies to increase participation in high-quality CTE.


Advance CTE commissioned a national survey to better understand the promise and opportunity of CTE, outlined in a new report, "The Value and Promise of Career Technical Education: Results from a National Survey of Parents and Students." Through this work, Advance CTE found that:
  • Finding a career passion was the most important critical selling point for parents and students (over 90 percent) – even surpassing having a career that pays well;
  •  The vast majority of parents and students (85 percent) continue to value college as the post-high school aspiration;  
  • Across the board, CTE programs are most valued for their ability to provide real-world skills within the education system, offering concrete and tangible benefits related to college and career success;  
  • These findings were consistent across all socio-economic groups, with a notably higher appreciation for high school CTE graduation success amongst lower-income, black and Hispanic groups; and
  • Counselors, teachers and CTE students and alumni are among the most trusted sources of information for students and parents alike.

Read the full report.


It is important that state and local leaders begin to use this research to better promote CTE programs, and offer recruitment activities that encourage students and parents to consider CTE as an option for their education. The tools below can help you being this work.  

State Work

Advance CTE will work with four states, Indiana, Maryland, New Jersey and Washington, selected through a competitive process to incorporate nationally tested messages about CTE in a variety of in-person events and virtual campaigns. Each state will receive up to $20,000 and eight months of technical assistance from Advance CTE.