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STEM Camp In Full Swing

STEM Camp 2015 began today with over forty 7th and 8th grade students attending, representing eight area schools,from Loudonville to Orrville to Mansfield.  Several area teachers donated their time to lead science- related activities such as the Invasive Species Scavenger Hunt, the Flaming Cheetos Lab, Identifying Macroinvertebrates, and the ever popular water bottle rocket creation and launches.  To see the rocket launch results, click Video Gallery.    

Honor Roll Named for Final Grading Period

The names of ACWHCC students who achieved honor roll status with all A’s and all A's and B's for the fourth nine-week grading period of the 2014-2015 school year have been released.  Also named were those students who reached Honor Roll status for the entire 2014-2015 school year.   For the list, click Read More.  

Board of Education Considers Fall Levy Renewal

  The ACWHCC Board of Education will decide next month whether to ask voters in November to renew a one mill operating levy for two, three, or five years or make the issue permanent.  Superintendent Mike McDaniel presented the options at the board’s regular meeting Thursday (June 18).
                McDaniel told the board that a combination of spending cuts and a pending state budget that could include a slight increase in state funding should put the district in good financial shape for the next five years if the levy is renewed.   He said the levy has had good support in the past as a three-year issue and that the funds have been effectively managed so that it is not necessary for the district to ask for an increase at this time.
                “The only down side is the state budget is only biennial,” McDaniel said, indicating that state funding could change in two years.  For the rest of the story, click Read More.

Perfect Attendance Noted

One student at ACWHCC has had perfect attendance for two years.  Chris Bonfiglio, a 2015 Ashland graduate, has not missed a day of school since he started at ACWHCC in the 2013 school year.  He received his Career Technical Passport in the Culinary Careers Management program and is also a member of the National Technical Honor Society.  Congratulation, Chris!  To see the list of other students with perfect attendance for the year and for the fourth grading period, click Read More.

Culinary Student Win Awards

Students in the Culinary Careers Management program at ACWHCC did well while competing at the Ohio Culinary Invitational Contest at Wayne County Career Center on May 14 – 15.  Scholarships were awarded to top finishers and Brian Fraley, junior from Loudonville, took top honors with a gold medal and a $6,000 scholarship to Sullivan University.  Hailey Briggs also a junior from Loudonville, received a bronze medal and a $2,000 Sullivan University scholarship, while Machia Leflore, junior, West Holmes, received a bronze medal and a $500 scholarship.  Jenna Woodruff, junior, West Holmes, and Dylan Holloway, West Holmes, also qualified for bronze medals.  

Board of Education Looks At Summer Projects

    ACWHCC will undertake a major project this summer to replace some aging equipment.  The Career Center Board of Education voted unanimously at its regular meeting Thursday (May 21) to replace three of the schools six rooftop heating and air conditioning units, install new temperature controls and re-route and replace ductwork and hot water pipes at a cost of $487,977.  For the rest of this article, click Read More.  

Seniors Honored At 2015 Assembly

One hundred nine seniors received their Career Technical Portfolios at ACWHCC's  2015 Senior Farewell Assembly while family and friends packed the Commons to support their graduates.  Scholarships were awarded by the Ashland Vocational Teachers Association, North Central State College, Rotary Club's STRIVE, and three private scholarship donors.  National Technical Honor Society honorees received their honor cords and the Student of the Year was named.  For photos of the morning, click Photo Gallery.  

Adult Education Graduates Seventy-Seven

Certificates of achievement were the the order of the night for seventy-seven adults who completed programs in ACWHCC's Adult Education Department.  The graduates now are ready for the job market with skills in areas such as Administrative Medical Office Specialist, Dental Assisting, Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration (HVAC), Medical Assisting, Pharmacy Technician, Phlebotomy Technology, State Tested Nursing Assistant (STNA), and Welding Technology.  The evening also honored more than sixty adult students who have completed or are enrolled in one of ACWHCC's General Educational Development programs in Ashland or Millersburg.  For photos of the night, click Adult Education/Photo Gallery.

Graphic Communications Winners


Seven ACWHCC Graphic Communications students competed in the 16th Annual Student Gallery of Superb Printing Student Award Ceremony hosted by the NEOCC (Northeast Ohio Craftsman Club) on May 12th. Competition was stiff from eight other northeast Ohio counties but the seven ACWHCC students brought home nine gold, silver, or bronze awards in varying graphic/photographic/creative design categories. Senior Cierra Strawser was chosen from all participants to receive a $4,000 college scholarship. Congratulations!

ACWHCC Honors Educators, Alumni, Support Staff


ACWHCC's annual Student Recognition night doesn't just recognize student achievement.  At the awards ceremony on May 14th, announcements were made for Secondary Educator of the year, Cosmetology Instructor Mrs. Molly Shea; Adult Educator of the Year, Transitions Mentor Bill Mellick; and Support Staff Person of the Year, Cafeteria Aide Sherri Dickerson.  

Also recognized was Ms. Angela Patterson Cragel, a 1988 graduate who studied Information Processing at ACWHCC.  Ms. Cragel has gone on to earn her Associate and Bachelor's Degrees in Accounting and is working on her Masters in Business Administration.  She is currently employed at Atlas Bolt and Screw, Ashland and was hailed by Superintendent Mike McDaniel as a wonderful example of how much ACWHCC graduates can achieve.  

Kokosing Wins Pentagon Honors

A Fredericktown based company that has helped students learn the “soft” skills needed to be good employees, provided internships and hired students after graduation is this year’s recipient of ACWHCC’s top honor.  Kokosing Construction Company, Inc. was announced as the winner of the 2015 Pentagon Award Thursday night (May 14) at the Career Center’s annual awards recognition program in the school commons.
                The Pentagon Award is presented annually to an individual or organization for outstanding contributions to the school.  Past recipients have included teachers, school officials, community members and businesses from the five school districts that make up the Career Center’s vocational education planning district.
                According to a proclamation read by Superintendent Mike McDaniel and presented to Kokosing representative Jim Organ, the company has shown an “unwavering” dedication to Career Center programs and students over the last five years through activities such as educating students about employability skills and workforce readiness during recruitment visits.  Kokosing also was recognized as an effective transition for students from school to industry by providing direct job experience through summer internships, apprenticeships and full-time employment and for encouraging its employees to sit on school advisory committees.  For more on this topic, click Read More.

ACWHCC Honors Outstanding Students

           ACWHCC's annual Student Recognition night honored students from a variety of programs for achievements of the 2014-2015 school year.  The awards ceremony included a number of special recognitions including the induction of four students into the National Technical Honor Society, joining two returning NTHS members who were inducted last year.  Two seniors, one from Ashland in the Culinary Careers program and one from Loudonville High School in the Graphics Communications program, and two juniors, one from Ashland High School in the Criminal Justice program and one from West Holmes High School in the Auto Body program, comprised the new membership class.
                Officials also recognized students for outstanding technical achievement, perfect attendance, honor roll achievement, and students of the month.  Other students received student activity awards for membership in the Interact Club and the Superintendent’s Student Advisory Committee.  

Bioscience Students Collect College Degrees

Congratulations to students in the Bioscience College-NOW program who received their Associate Degrees in Bioscience from North Central State College on May 8th - before they received their high school diplomas!  These students have a two-year head start on a bachelor's degree and are prepared to go on to other related careers such as medicine, pharmacy, public health, and nutrition.  Way to go, graduates!!

ACWHCC Receives STEM Grant

The Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) summer day camp sponsored by Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center (ACWHCC) has received a boost in the form of a $3,000 grant via the Ashland County Community Foundation (ACCF).  STEM education is designed to stimulate excitement and interest in science-related subjects in an effort to encourage students to choose these career paths.  ACWHCC’s STEM camp which is offered to students entering 7th and 8th grades is set for its second year.  ACWHCC was notified of the grant by ACCF chairman Jim Cutright who offered congratulations saying, “ACCF is very much committed to creating and financially supporting programs and activities that educate, inspire and encourage leadership development in our youth…In this instance, we appreciate the opportunity to provide funding and recognize the ACWH Career Center’s STEM Summer Camp as an excellent use of available 2015 grant dollars.”  To read the rest of this article, click Read More.  

Preschoolers Graduate

The Early Childhood Education program held its preschool graduation on Thursday, May 7th with eight children moving on to kindergarten next fall.  Students in the ECE program planned the ceremony which included special guests Mark Kohler, NCSC, Sarah Cleland, Ashland Public Library, and Kristy Spreng, Loudonville Public Library, along with ACWHCC administrators, Principal Rod Cheyney and Superintendent Mike McDaniel.  These children have had a great start on their education and we wish them the best!

Cruise-In Attracts Cars and Crowd

A near perfect weekend greeted the 10th annual ACWHCC Cruise-In that had been designed and planned by students in the Auto Body Tech program.  Added help came from the few Criminal Justice students who patrolled the grounds and Graphic Communications students who sold made-to-order Cruise-In t-shirts.  Prizes were awarded in several categories.  CarQuest Auto Parts sponsored the trophies and dash plaques for the first 100 vehicles registered.  For a list of winners, click Read More.  For photos of the days activities, click Photo Gallery.  

Dunk Tank Fun - 2015

The annual Graphic Communications dunk tank fund raiser meant fun for students and a damp day for volunteer administrators and teachers who were the "dunkees."  For photos and video, click Photo Gallery and Video Gallery.  

Spring Student Advisory Committee Meeting

The Superintendent's Student Advisory Committee held its spring and final meeting of the year over pizza and chips in the Board Room.  Supt. Mike McDaniel and Student Liaison Deb Gilson updated the students on changes that have been made this year per the committee's suggestions.  The recent Career Fair was judged a success by students while suggestions were made for improvement.  "Robbie's Voice," a program about drug abuse, was also critiqued and suggestions were made by students for other assembly programs.  For more about the meeting, click Read More.  

Dinner With the Teacher Draws Crowd

Dozens of students and their parents crowded the Commons on Thursday night for the annual Dinner with the Teacher event. New students who are enrolled for next fall brought their parents and were invited to spend some quality time with next year's program teacher over dinner and later in their respective labs.  For more photos of the event, click Photo Gallery.  

New Manufacturing Program To Be Rolled Out

         ACWHCC Superintendent Mike McDaniel says the school is on track for starting a new Manufacturing Technologies program in the 2015-2016 school year even though initial enrollment is very low.  McDaniel gave a progress report to the Career Center Board of Education at its regular meeting Thursday (April 16).
                McDaniel told the board it appears the program will be a good risk in the long run if it is launched on schedule because it meets eight of nine criteria used in the recent past to establish new programs.  They include sufficient job opportunities aligned with skills, sustainable wages in established career paths, recognized and valued credentials, a post-secondary partner with an appropriate credentialing pathway, an instructor with appropriate credentials and experience, necessary facilities and equipment, students who are prepared academically, student interest and minimal negative effect on existing programs.  For more of this article, click Read More.  

STRIVE Award Winners Named

The 2015 Rotary Club-sponsored Students Taking a Renewed Interest in the Value of Education (STRIVE) scholarship winners have been named. Pictured here with ACWHCC Superintendent Mike McDaniel are Laverena (Rena) Wienclaw, senior at Ashland City Schools and Cierra Strawser, senior in the Graphic Communications program at the Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center.  Both young ladies will received a $1,500 scholarship to be used toward tuition in an institution of higher education.  For the STRIVE program, the local Rotary Club works with a high school for the purpose of motivating students to improve their school performance during their senior year.  The major aspect of the program is that it is student driven and facilitated by Rotarians.   

Bioscience Students Collect Honors Credits

Three students in the Bioscience College-NOW program are on their way to an honors diploma through extra work and research.  These BIO students displayed their research results at North Central State College on April 22nd.  Fifteen credits are needed for the honors diploma.  To be considered for this program, students must have at least a 3.25 grade point average and their projects must be related to a current class they are taking though it may not be about a topic covered in class.  This means hours of extra work for these high school students who are already enrolled in college and who will receive an associate degree in bioscience if they complete all requirements.  

Senior Projects Wrapping Up

ACWHCC seniors are breathing a little easier as they finish up their career-technical education with senior projects.  Months ago students chose a project within their area of study and began researching it.  They were required to write a term paper, minimum of five pages, about the project and make an eight to ten minute oral presentation in front of a panel of judges who graded them on appearance, knowledge of material, etc. Photos:  A Criminal Justice senior presents his project on the history of fire fighting equipment while a senior in Auto Body Technology talks about the repairs he made to this vehicle.  For more photos of projects in other programs,click Photo Gallery.   

ACWHCC Students Off to Contests

Several ACWHCC students participated in the state SkillsUSA contest in Columbus on April 14th - Cosmetology (1), Engineering (7), Auto Body (2), Networking/Electronics (1), and Building Trades (1).  Pictured here are students in Power Equipment, FFA (3) and Graphic Communications, SkillsUSA (1) who competed earlier at the state level.  For more photos of those who qualified for state competition, click Photo Gallery.  Absent is a photo of the Building Trades student.  

April Students of the Month Named

Amanda Boss, Ashland High School and Dale Sherman, Jr., Hillsdale High School, were named Career Center Students of the Month for April.
Boss, in the Career Center’s Criminal Justice program, was named the Junior Student of the Month.  She is the daughter of Brian and Beatrice Boss and resides in Ashland.
Sherman in the Career Center’s Engineering program, was named the Senior Student of the Month.  He is the son of Andrea Pipher and resides in Ashland. Click Read More for the rest of the story. 

New Robotic Equipment Demonstrated for Board of Education

 ACWHC has purchased some new robotic and computerized equipment that will help give students an advantage when looking for work in today’s high tech job market.  Engineering Technology instructor Tom Close and student Andrew Liska demonstrated three of the four items at the Career Center Board of Education’s regular meeting on March 19th.
                One of the presentations involved a Mechatronic work station that allows Close to introduce students to industrial electrical, hydraulic and pneumatic flow software and helps teach ladder logic in machine programming.  Liska showed the board how the work station operated after it was set up and programmed to simulate a conveyor belt used to sort metallic from plastic items.
                “This is designed to be a miniature version of what you would see on a factory or plant line,” Liska said.  “We saw a lot of conveyor belts and the same equipment as this when we toured LuK (in Wooster).  They were even using the same programming system.”  Click Read More for the rest of the story.  

Honor Roll Released for 3rd Grading Period

ACWHCC has announced the names of students who achieved honor roll status for the third nine-week grading periods of the 2014-2015 school year.  For the complete list, click Read More.

Enroll NOW for 2015-2016 Preschool

Parents:  You are invited to check out the ACWHCC preschool program conducted by students in the Early Childhood Education program overseen by Ohio-certified instructor Shirley Meehan.  The preschool offers: 

  • Classes three days a week - Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday
  • Two sessions - AM - 9:00 to 11:00 (3-4 year olds) --- PM - 12:15-2-15 (4-5 year olds)
  • The oversight of the Ohio Department of Education
  • Observation booth available for parents
  • Kindergarten-ready instruction
  • Curb-side preschool drop-off service

For more information and application call ACWHCC 419-289-3313 or stop at ACWHCC to observe the current program at work.

Engineering Students Exhibit at Ohio's State House

Four senior students in the Engineering and Design Technology (ENG) program at ACWHCC had the opportunity to visit the Ohio State House on April 12th as part of a Student Technology Showcase sponsored by the Ohio Association of Career Technical Education (ACTE)    The Engineering program’s students discussed mechatronics and robotics with Senator Larry Obhof and some state representatives and displayed their NAO robot ROB.  An attention getter, ROB was programmed by the students to dance the Macarena and perform other activities.  For the rest of the article, click Read More.

Resource Conservation Installs Bluebird Boxes

In another example of community service, students in the Resource Conservation program have installed bluebird boxes on the grounds of Hospice of North Central Ohio, Ashland.  The boxes were constructed by RC students while they were confined to the classroom during bad winter weather days.  With spring near, it was time to get the boxes to the birds just in time for spring nesting.  

Perfect Attendance for Third Grading Period

For a list of students who achieved Perfect Attendance for the third 9-week grading period of the 2014-2015 school year, click Read More.
Chloe Ernst (Loudonville)
Bryce Kelley (West Holmes)

ACWHCC Named 2015 Education Business of the Year by Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce

ACWHCC was named the 2015 Outstanding Education Business of the Year at the Ashland Area Chamber of Commerce Annual Awards on Thursday, March 12th.  A judging committee from the Medina Area Chamber of Commerce chose ACWHCC from three candidates, basing their selection on the school's performance and standing, customer service strategies and practices, community involvement, and promotion of Ashland County and the surrounding area.  Supt McDaniel accepted the award and praised all ACWHCC students and staff , high school and adult education, for their dedication to excellence and to the community.  

FCCLA Regional Winner

ACWHCC's Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) students participated in regional competition at the Lorain County Community College on Saturday, March 7, 2015.  Alyssa Spreng, Loudonville Senior in Early Childhood Education, received a Gold Medal in the Language and Literacy category.  FCCLA Advisor is Mrs. Shirley Meehan (Early Childhood Education teacher).

SkillsUSA and Other Contest Winners Announced

Ashland County-West Holmes Career Center (ACWHCC) SkillsUSA students participated in regional competition at Wayne County Career Center on Saturday, February 28, 2015.  The following students received awards and qualify to compete at the State SkillsUSA Competition in Columbus, Ohio on April 14 and 15, 2015. 
·    Sierra Coffman, Cosmetology, Ashland, Senior, 1st Place – Cosmetology
*  Sarah Currie, Graphics Communications, Ashland, Junior, 1st Place - Graphic Communications
·    Meghan Dawson, Auto Body, West Holmes, Senior, 3rd Place – Automotive Refinishing
·     Dillon Lykins, Auto Body, Hillsdale, Senior, 2nd Place – Collision Repair
·   Ryan Markley, Construction Trades, West Holmes, Senior, 2nd Place – Carpentry
·   Jacob Tyner, Networking & Electronics Technologies, Ashland, Junior, 3rd Place – Information Technology  
Best wishes to these students as they participate in their respective Skills Ohio Contests in Columbus on April 14 and 15.  

Culinary Students Participate in Pork Cook-Off

Ten teams of culinary students from four schools competed Feb 11th in the annual "Culinary Affair with Pork Cook-off" sponsored by the Northeast Ohio Pork Producers.   The student chefs had ninety minutes to prepare a pork dish and other dinner courses from two trays of ingredients and recipes that they had never seen before.  A half-hour planning period allowed students to get organized and assign tasks from chopping, to sauteing to choosing the china, but the real test came in the kitchen with the clock ticking.  Finished products were judged by five culinary professionals.  ACWHCC's two teams received a fifth place medal and an honorable mention at the end of the contest.  For photos of the event, click Photo Gallery.  

Graphics Students Create Lasting Momentos

Juniors in ACWHCC's Graphic Communications (GRA) program put together some lasting and unique momentos for Ashland High School girl's basketball seniors.  Using Adobe InDesign and Photoshop, GRA students created a collage of each girl's basketball photos in the shape of the first letter of their name.  The collage was then glued onto the letters along with a hanger so the finished product can be displayed on a wall.  Holding the letters are the students who worked on this project 

ACWHCC Receives Auditor of State Award

ACWHCC's  recent financial audit  by the Auditor of State’s office has returned a clean audit report.  ACWHCC’s excellent record keeping has earned it the Auditor of State Award.  The Auditor of State Award is presented to local governments and school districts upon the completion of a financial audit.  
ACWHCC Superintendent Mike McDaniel stated, “This Auditor of State Award is an important verification of the district’s commitment to maintain continuous fiscal responsibility and integrity.  I commend our Treasurer Julie Smith and her staff as well as all Career Center employees for their cooperation and combined efforts that contributed to this achievement.”  For the rest of this article, click Read More. 

Food Drive Over the Top

Students in Auto Technology conducted their annual food drive in conjunction with Armstrong Utilities of Ashland and came out waaaaay over their goal of 1700 items.  The collection which will be donated to Associated Charities numbered 3267 items of canned/boxed food.  Auto Tech students led the way in donated items followed by students in the Criminal Justice program.  Photo:  Auto Tech and Criminal Justice students pose with the display of donated food items in the Auto Tech lab.  

Cosmetology Student Winners

Three students in the ACWHCC Cosmetology program took honors at the Ohio Association of Beauticians Annual Student "Combout" contest.  Two students took first and third places in the fantasy art category and one student was awarded first place in Consumer Day-Styling.  You can check out a photo of one example of the detail and creativity put into their fantasy art.  Congratulations to our winners!!  

Sophomores Investigate Career Tech

Sophomores from ACWHCC's member schools recently spent time checking out career-tech programs and considering their next two years of high school.  Visiting students spent time in three programs of their choice watching current ACWHCC students and teachers (and an alumnus in the case of Culinary Careers/Management) present their respective programs.  Visitors then had a chance to do some hands-on activities to get a feel for each program. Photo:  Sophomores try out welding with the oversight of Auto Body Technology students.  For more photos of the visit, click Photo Gallery.

Painting Meets Digital Art in Graphics Communications

In a recent project, Graphic Communications (GRA) students used the latest technology to create traditional art.   

       A new feature of Adobe Illustrator called Image Trace can take a photograph and break it up into 3, 6, or 16 spot colors. GRA students chose a favorite celebrity photo, separated the photo into 6 colors (or “swatches”) in Illustrator, and gave an original name to each of the colors. They printed this sample as their guide. Then, they removed the colors, applied a thin black outline to the sections, and printed the outline onto posterboard.  Click Read More for the rest of the story.  

Auto Tech Serves At Hospice

TheAutoTechnology program took some time for community service at Hospice of North Central Ohio, Ashland.  Fall clean-up was the order of the day with leaf raking, cleaning flower beds, and general pre-winter preparation with the supervision of teacher Jon Burkholder.  Hospice posted a big thank you to the students.

ACWHCC - The Place To Be!

ACWHCC offers many different Tech Prep career-technical programs for students who are interested in a career plus the opportunity to earn college credits.  ACWHCC received "A's" on its 2013-2014 State Report Card with a graduation rate of 94.3% based on students who graduated in 4 years and in post program placement at 90.4%, i.e. the percentage of students who are employed, in an apprenticeship, join the military, or are enrolled in postsecondary education.     

Important Info for Parents of Students with Disabilities

Click Student Resources tab at the top, then Notice for Students with Disabiities

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