SIROW staff are hard at working making change – Project CHANGE, that is.
Project CHANGE (Career, Harassment, And Nontraditional Gender Education) aims to increase gender nontraditional recruitment and retention in Arizona secondary CTE (Career and Technical Education) programs, and promote healthy and safe learning environments in Arizona schools. Career and Technical Education programs prepare students for the workforce at no cost to them, and these programs include Bioscience Technologies, Construction, Graphic and Web Design, Cosmetology/Aesthetics, and Hospitality Management.
However, gender plays a role in who chooses these programs which significantly benefit students, and young women are the minority in many CTE programs. Project CHANGE works to help students understand why ideas of gender may limit what they believe they can do, and to empower them to make CTE choices regardless of gender stereotypes.
Senior Instructional Specialist Allison Dumka and Gender Equity Specialist Tim Wernette, led by Claudia Powell, SIROW Director of Evaluation Services, are trained to discuss gender equity related to career development and opportunities. They also present on topics related to gender based discrimination and harassment in schools and in the workforce, including preventing and addressing sexual harassment and bullying online.
This fiscal year, they have reached over 11,000 participants in their presentations. Additionally, Project CHANGE has presented at the Arizona State Counselors’ Association annual conference, reaching 200 Arizona counselors, and now serves on the career development Advisory Board of Phoenix Metro Tech High School.
Project CHANGE staff travel the distance across Arizona, including rural and urban school districts, from Page to Nogales and Kayenta to Yuma.
Doug Allan, CTE Director of Flagstaff Unified School District, commends Project CHANGE for their efforts—“Our association with Ms. Allison Dumka was a distinct benefit to our youngest high school students this school year. Her presentation was very informative and really helped our students understand their career options. We look forward to expanding our relationship SIROW to include more schools and students next year. We continue to appreciate all of their time and efforts on our behalf!"
If you are interested in Project CHANGE presentations, more information is available HERE.