For example, right now if you’re interested in Auto Body Tech/Collision Repair, you take classes at the PATC in painting and refinishing, which leads to an ASE certification in Collision Repair.
But what if your interest is in fiberglass design and sculpture?
Then the question becomes, “how do we take these disciplines and intertwine them with the goal of being able to find a job that you can do in Paducah with the knowledge and skills you have?”
If that’s the goal, then the process needs to change from one stand alone auto tech pathway to multiple ways to grow through an auto tech pathway. It becomes not just taking auto body tech and welding and art classes separately because those things interest you but finding ways to make connections in those disciplines so you can create your own pathway to the vocation you want to pursue. So the Innovation Hub gives us that space where the disciplines can overlap and those connections can be made.
I want to quickly point out an essential component of the Innovation Hub- Art and Design. Art and Design are the fundamental disciplines that connect all these pathways together. It is the “oxygen” in the Innovation Hub atmosphere that makes everything else work. When you start looking at industrial maintenance, whether it’s auto body, auto tech, carpentry, or welding, there’s an essence of art and design in that.
If you look at IT and what you can do in multimedia- you have to be a visual thinker to see patterns and spot trends. Art lends itself to that.
When you go into engineering and design technology, art and design are a big piece of that. Even in Logistics and Health Science I see connections to Art and Design. In my thinking, Art and Design are ligaments that bind all of these disciplines together.
So as the Innovation Hub allows us to customize educational pathways for students, they become more committed to their education. As they become more committed to their educational path, their odds of success improve, and we move closer to our target of having 100% of our students college and career ready.
In Part Two I’ll talk about how the Innovation Hub will help us reach our other two Student Learning goals, and how the Innovation Hub aligns with the focus area of Engaging Paducah.