Some say a true measure of a person’s character is how they respond in adverse conditions, this was exemplified during the process of interviewing Nicole Lord. Nicole was a previous participant in the ACTE Fellows program in 2016. I called this a process based on the scheduling challenges brought on by the recent adverse weather in the Great Lakes region. Nicole demonstrated many traits of a highly effective professional when trying to reschedule or complete the interviews.
Nicole is currently leading Flushing (MI) School district as the CTE Coordinator, Work-Based Learning Coordinator, Career Development Facilitator and Early College Coordinator. Nicole finds her work in these areas rewarding as she advises and mentors students to help connect their academic and technical interests in a variety of fields. As she works with students strives to find multiple opportunities for students to excel in their education. Nicole’s previous career in the business world and her interest in coaching have been assets in assisting students in the pursuit of new career opportunities.
Nicole explained her interest in coaching cheerleading after high school and her bachelors in business led her into the education field. She worked for a non-profit upon completion of her degree and started to find opportunities in the educational field. Nicole earn a Masters’ in Business and started to teach at the collegiate level as her first experiences in teaching. She continued to pursue her teaching certification and began to teach at the secondary level. She last taught full time in 2008, at that time her career path took her to fulltime administrative work in the Career and Technical Education.
Currently, Nicole is the President of the Michigan Career Placement Association, MCPA. The MCPA’s mission is to provide direction, placement and leadership for those that assist in the placement of students in Work Based Learning Experiences. She has also served in leadership roles with ACTE over the past few years. These leadership experiences have been valuable in her career development by having the ability to network with others.
Overall Nicole has seen many positive developments with the current state of Career and Technical Education. At the beginning of her career the field was known as vocational education and now is Career and Technical Education. Technology and terminology have changed over the years but the mission of combining education and application of what is learned has stayed consistent. As the image of CTE continues to be positive in the perceptions of the public and those in politics the field can continue to build upon support from the business community.