High School CTE Programs

High School Career and Technical Education Programs

Career Pathways

Prince William County Public Schools (PWCS) offers a wide variety of rigorous and engaging career and technical education (CTE) courses and programs designed to provide students with authentic, career-focused academic and technical instruction, leadership and networking opportunities, validate knowledge and skills with industry credentials recognized by post-secondary institutions and business/industry, and opportunities to engage in work-based learning (WBL) experiences.

CTE programs prepare students for a variety of high-wage, high-skill and high-demand careers with equitable access to multiple post-secondary options, including post-secondary education enrollment in a two- or four-year college or university, enlisting in military service, and / or gainful employment.

CTE courses and programs are organized by career clusters and career pathways to align with student interests and regional business and industry. High school students in PWCS can access CTE courses and programs in two ways:

  1. Career Pathways: Career Pathways are suggested course sequences available at base schools. Students express interest during the course selection process and work with School Counselors to enroll in elective courses.
  2. Specialty Programs: Some CTE courses and programs are only available at select locations. All CTE programs are interest-based programs, but a Specialty Program application is required if the student must transfer to another school or will be transported to another school site for one or more courses. Visit the Specialty Programs website to learn more about the application and timeline.

Career Clusters

A career cluster is a group of careers that share similar features or common themes. CTE courses in PWCS offer students access to 16 career clusters.

Career Pathways

A career pathway is a coordinated sequence of high school courses that leads to a post-secondary career pathway. Students select a program of study, or career pathway, based on academic and career interests. PWCS CTE career pathways also include opportunities to earn relevant industry credentials, which may provide students with increased employment opportunities and/or college credit.

Note: The career pathways are intended to provide a suggested sequence and do not guarantee the availability of courses or programs at every high school. To find out which courses are available at your high school, click on the course name within the Career Pathway.

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