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PPSD Students, From Four Schools, Shine and Make History in CTE and STEM Competitions, Advancing to Nationals!

PROVIDENCE, RI –  The Providence Public School District (PPSD) is celebrating a wave of success in Career and Technical Education (CTE) and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs. Students from four PPSD schools–including three redesign schools–and across multiple CTE pathways, have earned top honors at the state level and are now preparing to compete at national competitions this summer.  Their achievements underscore the District's commitment to providing rigorous and innovative learning experiences that prepare students for college, career, and beyond, and progress being made to promote excellence in learning under the District's community-led Turnaround Action Plan.


"The success of Providence Public Schools' students in these competitions is a testament to the strength of their CTE and STEM programs. These programs play a vital role in ensuring that all students have the opportunity to graduate college and career ready. Congratulations to the students, teachers, and administrators who made these achievements possible," Rhode Island Department of Education Commissioner Angélica Infante-Green.


"We are incredibly proud of our students' accomplishments in these CTE and STEM competitions. Their dedication and the hard work of our teachers are truly inspiring. These programs provide invaluable opportunities for students to explore their passions, develop essential skills, and prepare for fulfilling careers in high-demand fields. The success of our redesign schools in these competitions is a testament to the effectiveness of our turnaround efforts, which focus on creating strong academic and career pathways for all students,” PPSD Superintendent Dr. Javier Montañez.


Highlights include achievements from students from three high schools, Providence Career and Technical Academy (PCTA), Juanita Sanchez Educational Complex (JSEC), Dr. Jorge Alvarez High School, and one middle school, DelSesto Middle School.

Below are some of the highlights:


PCTA CTE Students Showcase Skills and Advance to Nationals


  • Welding Champion: Junior Alexis Lozada from the PCTA CTE Welding program took first place at the Rhode Island Project MFG Welding Competition, besting competitors from across the state. Alexis and his teacher, Nate Hoffman, will travel to Pennsylvania in June for the national competition with a chance to win a $10,000 prize.
  • SkillsUSA National Qualifiers: Nine students from PCTA earned gold medals at the Rhode Island SkillsUSA championships, qualifying them for nationals in Atlanta this June. These students represent various CTE programs, including Business/Cosmetology, General Construction, Electrical, HVAC/Plumbing, and Pre-Engineering.


Juanita Sanchez Students Earn Recognition at HOSA Nationals, R.I. State House


At the Rhode Island House of Representatives, Representative José Batista welcomed and honored nine JSEC students from the CTE BioMedical program: Jay’a Richards, Joseline Soberanis, Raquel Ortiz, Heidy Tipaz, Angel Nunez, Aidile Gomes, Josmeily Minier, Veasna Yean, and Lesly Guzman. These dedicated students impressed judges with their research on blood donation awareness, sports medicine, and healthy living, earning silver medals at the State Leadership Conference which qualified them for the HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America) International Leadership Conference in Houston, Texas this June. They were accompanied by JSEC Biomedical Educator Madeline Chisholm, JSEC Principal Testa, and PPSD Superintendent Javier Montañez.


Dr. Jorge Alvarez High School Students Take First in MESA Competition


A team of four Computer Science students from Dr. Jorge Alvarez High School triumphed at the RI Math, Engineering and Science Achievement (MESA) competition. They will put their skills to the test at the National Engineering Design Competition in San Diego, California this June.


DelSesto Middle Schoolers Make History as first RI school to go to MESA Nationals


A team of four students from DelSesto Middle School secured first place in the 2024 RI MESA Middle School State Engineering Design Competition. As the first-ever team from Rhode Island to qualify, they will compete at the MESA USA National Engineering Design Competition in San Diego this June. DelSesto has hosted the RIMESA program for two years and plans to expand to more students next year.


Building a Strong Future in CTE and STEM


These achievements highlight the success of Providence Public Schools' redesign efforts, focusing on building rigorous STEM pathways and CTE programs. The District is proud of its students' dedication and the exceptional support provided by their teachers.


During the 2022-23 school year, JSEC, DelSesto, Jorge Alvarez, and two other PPSD schools, Mount Pleasant High School, and Hope High School, engaged in a rigorous, data-driven process to redesign their academic programs. Through the redesign process, the District is creating new school options that meet student and family interests and prepare students for success in their post-secondary careers.


There are 30 CTE programs in the Providence Public Schools across many industry clusters. CTE is a powerful educational experience with rigorous course sequences, work-based learning hours, industry credentials and dual enrollment opportunities. PPSD’s CTE Office is focused on identifying post-secondary opportunities for graduates in high wage/high growth industries. Next month, approximately 100 students will be honored at CTE Career Signing Day. These students will be committing to good-paying, entry level positions at companies and organizations including General Dynamics, Electric Boat, Laborers Union (LiUNA), and Providence Water.


CTE programs and pathways at JSEC and Alvarez are implemented in partnership with NAF (formerly the National Academy Foundation), a national organization that supports academy development in Engineering, Finance, Health Sciences, and Information Technology.  NAF serves as an integral part of their redesign plans by providing technical support in curriculum design, and work-based learning. JSEC and Alvarez have developed Industry Advisory Boards made up of local industry leaders and professionals that collaborate with the schools to design career-driven post-secondary preparation as well as linking schools to exemplary programs across the country.


For more information about Providence Public Schools, visit . Follow , (@pvdschools), or Instagram (@pvdschools) for timely updates.