Lawrence resident Shawn Wright-Browner was honored with the Tom Paul Outstanding Director of the Year Award during the June 7 Indiana Association of Career and Technical Education Districts state conference.
The award honors “exemplary CTE administrators who are highly respected by their peers for their knowledge, leadership, and commitment to career and technical education.”
Wright-Browner is the director of the J. Everett Light Career Center in Indianapolis. The JELCC, according to its website, provides programs for high school students “to explore their passion in an innovative, hands-on, real-world environment.”
Although she was honored to receive the award, she said recognition is now what motivates her. She derives satisfaction from helping students navigate career impacts and positively impact their communities.
“I do not work to earn awards,” Wright-Browner said.
Like many of the students she supports, Wright-Browner’s relationship with career technical education started in high school, when she gained experience working in a hospital. She has been with the JELCC for nearly two decades.
The J. Everett Light Career Center offers several programs to students in Boone County and Hamilton County schools. The center also works with students at North Central High School. Wright-Browner said all the programs are popular with students.
Many of the JELCC programs provide training for jobs currently in high demand. Wright-Browner said two good examples are the cosmetology program and the culinary arts program. Programs for dental and veterinary careers also are popular.
Wright-Browner said another nice aspect to the career center is that it provides students the opportunity to earn college credit. Not only that, but students at participating high schools also don’t have to worry about a significant financial commitment. She said the out-of-pocket cost usually comes in the form of something small, like rental book fees.
For more on the JELCC, visit jelcc.com.