Ramona Smith of Carl Albert State College recently received the Outstanding Member Award from the Oklahoma Career and Technical Education Equity Council.
Smith was one of 15 Oklahomans and eight Oklahoma businesses and nonprofit organizations honored at the 24th annual Making It Work Day at the Capitol on March 29. Making It Work Day recognizes individuals who are committed to removing barriers to success for single-parent families by providing educational experiences for students beyond the classroom. The ceremony, held during a luncheon at the Oklahoma History Center in Oklahoma City, also recognized nontraditional students and members who received national honors for their efforts.
“I truly enjoy working with the students,” said Smith, director of CASC’s Power 1 Program in Leflore, Haskell and Sequoyah counties. “The Power I program gives them a support system and can identify resources the students may need while attending college or a career tech to ensure their success. Words can hardly describe the feeling I get when I see a former student who has battled through any number of barriers such as domestic violence, being homeless, or not as academically talented as others, overcome and get their education.”
As Power 1 Program director at CASC, Smith is responsible for directing staff of the program in all three counties, for numerous reports required by program guidelines and numerous daily tasks, including working directly with students, said Ashley Watts, Power 1 Program specialist.
“She has an excellent rapport within the communities in which the programs are housed, and unlike many employees, her job does not stop when she leaves the office at the end of the day,” Watts said. “She has spent numerous hours of her personal time to speak with others regarding a student or their situation in order to find resources. She has also spoken on students’ behalf to help them in their individual situations.”
“Making It Work Day at the Capitol is an opportunity to recognize the success of outstanding students from colleges and career technology centers who contribute to making it work in Oklahoma, as well as those administrators, instructors and community partners who have worked to expand opportunities and improve outcomes through their dedicated and invaluable services,” said Angela Barnes, OkCTEEC president and coordinator of the REACH and REACH4Work program at Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City. “It is a great day to let our state leaders, legislators and Oklahomans see the faces of those who go over and beyond at making a difference in our state.”
For more information about OkCTEEC, visit www.cteec.org/. For more information about the Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education, visit www.okcareertech.org.
Pam Cloud, Managing News Director
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