Virtual Construction Trades Career Fair – November 19

MaineSPARK, in collaboration with the Maine Department of Education, invites students, educators, and caregivers for a morning with the Construction Trades!

Join us as we promote career opportunities in Maine! This is the first of our Trades Virtual Career Fair Series and it takes place on Thursday, November 19th, from 9am-11am via Zoom.

We ask teachers to challenge and encourage your students to participate. Use this event as an assignment, earning credit! Whether they are at home (remote learning) or in your classroom, this is an opportunity you don’t want your students to miss!

Through this very challenging time we must be innovative. This is a win-win for both students who are seeking careers in Maine and for our Maine businesses who are seeking a future workforce.

Maine construction companies will be presenting in their own breakout rooms, but only after participants hear from one of the most dynamic and inspiring guest speakers they will ever experience.

Hear from the following ABC Members:

  • Connectivity Point Design Installation
  • DeBlois Electric Inc.
  • Eastern Fire
  • Hebert Construction
  • Johnson & Jordan, Inc
  • Landry & Sons Acoustics, Inc.
  • Langford & Low
  • N.S. Giles Foundation, Inc.
  • R.J. Grondin & Sons
  • Sargent Corporation

Students will have the opportunity to network with employers virtually. Instructors can host a socially distanced ‘watch party’ at your school – we can help provide the snacks! There is no cost to attend. We strongly encourage students to sign into Zoom individually so they may choose their own breakout rooms.

Please register at  Students, teachers and caregivers are encouraged to register.


Welcome and Keynote 9:00am – 9:30 am

  •    Greg Sizemore, Vice President, HSE and Workforce Development, Associated Builders and Contractors

Breakout sessions from 9:35am – 11:00 am

  •    Students can self-select the industry representative/organization of their choice to hear more about that industry and job opportunities.

This is the first in a series of events for careers in the trades, and we will be announcing more in the future.

Questions can be sent to

Helping Young People Find Their Voice Through Public Media – An article by Mid-Maine Technical Center Instructor David Boardman

Mid-Maine Technical Center (MMTC) Instructor of Mass Media Communications David Boardman recently contributed to an article in the the national Association for Career & Technical Education (ACTE) magazine, Techniques.

The article, “Helping Young People Find Their Voice Through Public Media,” is about the power and importance of student-led media projects with a focus on a team of students from Boardman’s class at MMTC that produced a four-minute story for Maine Public Television on a student-led groundwater testing study that found high levels of arsenic in drinking water.

Boardman writes, “Not only did students contribute to the ‘participatory culture’ of our media-rich society, but, as young consumers, they gained a sense of how to watch news with a critical eye. They learned to seek out connections where they exist and about what good journalism looks like, as a producer and as a consumer.”

The article is an enthusiastic nod to how important project-based learning and student led initiatives are to student learning and pays tribute to the amazing things happening within the learning communities of career and technical education programs all over Maine and across the country.

To read the article, scroll to pages 24-28 of this digital version of Techniques magazine.

This story idea was provided by MMTC as part of the Maine Schools Sharing Success Campaign. To submit a story or an idea email it to Rachel at

MEDIA RELEASE: UTC Business Leadership Instructor Named CTE Teacher of the Year

Amanda Peterson, the Business Leadership Instructor at United Technologies Center (UTC) in Bangor has been named the 2020 Maine Career and Technical Education (CTE) Teacher of the Year by the Maine Administrators of Career and Technical Education (MACTE). Mrs. P, as her students call her, was honored by Maine Department of Education (DOE) Commissioner Pender Makin and Maine Community College System President David Daigler at the annual MACTE conference which was held virtually on October 8th.

(Pictured: Amanda Peterson poses for photos with her family members after being honored.)


“This is a period in our history where educators of exceptional character are extra important,” said Commissioner Makin in her remarks honoring Peterson. “Students all crave stability and hope, a reason to believe in their own future. Having your teacher demonstrate clearly and consistently that they care and believe in you is priceless.”

Known for her ability to blend an extraordinary set of abilities in an effort to cater to each and every student, Mrs. P thoughtfully taps into each student’s uniqueness, talents, and dreams by celebrating and them and helping them to confidently grow into their best selves.  She transforms individuals often filled with self-doubt and uncertainty, to individuals who demonstrate self-confidence and direction.

During his remarks, MCCS President Daigler spoke about Mrs. P’s efforts to develop a robust CTE Business program for UTC that helps students earn college credit. “Currently Ms. Peterson offers 12 EMCC Business courses and additional courses from 2 other Maine higher education institutions, bringing her total course offerings to 14 college courses or 42 college credits.  Delivering a demanding college level curriculum to high school students is challenging.  Having over 90% complete with A’s and B’s based on locked 3rd party and college summative assessments is phenomenal. This level of learning, with students widely becoming able to reach and function in Bloom’s Quadrant D, occurs because of her dedication, belief system, and understanding of experiential education.”

Maine Administrators of Career and Technical Education (MACTE) administers the Career and Technical Education (CTE) Teacher of the Year Award, which recognizes teachers who are providing outstanding career and technical education programs for youth and/or adults in their respective fields and communities.

Peterson has a Master’s of Science in Education and a Bachelor’s of Science in Business from Husson University and an Associate Degree in Business Administration from Thomas College. She has 25+ years working in a family small business, (farming, restaurants, general stores), in addition several years in industrial education experience, instructing, banking, IT support, finance, and small business ownership. Peterson is a certified Maine CTE instructor in Business Education, Information Technology and Cooperative Industrial Training.



Maine Career Development Association Hosts Art & Poetry Contest for Maine Students

In celebration of National Career Development Month in November, the Maine Career Development Association is sponsoring a statewide Poetry & Art contest, that is open to students and adults state-wide.

The Contest is held annually on a national level in celebration of the importance of life-long career development and the personal empowerment of all people. Events and activities in celebration of National Career Month help examine lives, careers, and the alternatives available to increase everyone’s personal success and happiness.

Contest Eligibility

Adults and students enrolled in public, private schools in Maine, and students who are homeschooled in Maine are eligible to participate.

Contest division areas include:

  • Primary Grades: K – 2
  • Intermediate Grades 3 – 5
  • Middle Grades 6 – 8
  • Senior Grades 9 – 12
  • Adult Student 18 and older enrolled in school
  • Open Adult 18 and older (teachers, parents, professionals, etc.)

Each entry should celebrate and inspire career development with a positive tone while emphasizing the national theme.

For further information on how to participate in the contest including eligibility requirements for both poetry and art submissions and how make submissions, please view the Maine Career Development Association’s Art & Poetry Contest Flyer and Entry Form.

Winners in each category will be posted to the MCDA website ( as well as included in the MCDA newsletter! Winners will then be sent on to the NCDA to be judged nationally. National winning entries will be recognized on the NCDA website, as well as on display at the annual conference in Atlanta in 2021. The school coordinator of each state winner will receive a free year’s membership to the Maine Career Development Association!

DEADLINE: All submissions must include the official entry form, be postmarked by November 23rd, and mailed to Tara Kierstead, MCDA K-12 Representative, at the address on the entry form.

Please email Tara Kierstead at with any questions.


Totally Trades Virtual Career Week 10/19 – 10/23

Totally Trades Virtual Career Week provides informational sessions for girls* in 8th – 12th grade who are enrolled in or interested in enrolling in a Career and Technical (CTE) program or seriously interested in the trades. Interested students can register for one or more of sessions as part of the first virtual Totally Trades! Career Week. Students that are learning in-person at a school and want to attend a morning session, should ask a Guidance Counselor, CTE, or other school staff person about taking time from their schedule and accessing a computer to attend. There are no fees to attend!

*workshops are for self-identifying girls and gender expansive youth

Bridge and Highway Building

Monday, October 19

This session will focus on trades such as carpenters, laborers, and heavy equipment operators.  The Maine Department of Transportation and others will be on hand to provide information about growing jobs, apprenticeships, and careers.

9:00 – 10:30 AM REGISTER HERE

6:00 – 7:30 PM REGISTER HERE

Communications Technology

Tuesday, October 20

This workshop will focus on career opportunities in the technology field, from cable installation to design. Local professionals will talk about their own experiences working in this sector, the training required for different types of technology-related jobs, and the steps you can take to pursue a career in the field.

9:00 – 10:30 AM REGISTER HERE

6:00 – 7:30 PM REGISTER HERE

Automotive Trades

Wednesday, October 21

Explore the typical workday of a female Certified Auto Technician. Learn about the many types of work in the Automotive Trades.

9:00 – 10:30 AM REGISTER HERE

6:00 – 7:30 PM REGISTER HERE

Public Safety Careers

Thursday, October 22

From Police Officers and Firefighters to EMTs and Paramedics the Public Safety field is vast with a number of career paths available to those looking to serve and protect. Join us as we explore the work, life, and experiences of a Police Officer, Firefighter, and Paramedic.

9:00 – 10:30 AM REGISTER HERE

6:00 – 7:30 PM REGISTER HERE

Building Trades

Friday, October 23

There is more to building trades than construction. In this workshop, you will learn about several factors that go into a build project – from engineering principles to electrical wiring, project management and so much more!

9:00 – 10:30 AM REGISTER HERE

4:00 – 5:30 PM REGISTER HERE

FMI contact Suzanne at 768-9635 or OR visit our website. We are also on Facebook and Instagram @totallytrades.

Thank you to our Major Sponsors:

Maine Department of Transportation
Maine Department of Education