Local Petrochemical Company Reps ‘Amazed’ by New Pasadena ISD Career and Technical High School

Local Petrochemical Company Reps ‘Amazed’ by New Pasadena ISD Career and Technical High School
Posted on 07/28/2014


Israel Grinberg, Pasadena ISD Facilities and Construction Project Manager; Derek Moody,  CTHS Assistant Principal; Steve Fleming, CTHS Principal; Tonya Sandefer, Albemarle Foundation; Paul Chapman, Albemarle Foundation; Chad Phillips, CTHS Assistant Principal.

                             CTHS One Step Closer to Opening Doors

Albemarle Catalysts Company employees agreed that the new Career and Technical High School is nothing short of “amazing.”

That was the term of the day, frequently used by Albemarle representatives during a tour of the building. The group stopped by the campus to present a check in the amount of $26,000 to go toward  helping the school achieve its mission: to empower students to successfully transition to the global community through unique educational experiences.

“Our goal is to provide the resources necessary to help students become productive members of our community,” Paul Chapman, facilities coordinator of Albemarle in Pasadena, said. “We are honored to be able to make this investment into our future, our children and in the community.”

The Houston-based petrochemical corporation made the generous contribution on behalf of the Albemarle Foundation through proceeds from their annual golf tournament. 

“Many businesses and industrial partners of Albemarle participated in the tournament and were gracious in their donations to the Albemarle Foundation,” Steven Fleming CTHS principal said. “Albemarle graciously shared those donations and proceeds with CTHS to support our students, staff and programs.”

During the tour, construction workers were putting the finishing touches on the project amid newly installed floor to ceiling windows, walls, and carpets.

Sarah Chapman, Paul’s wife, was one of the first CTHS teachers to get a look at the campus. A teacher for over 27 years, she said she has never seen a campus quite like this.

“I’m extremely excited to have the opportunity to teach at such a gorgeous school,” she said. “This is truly amazing. It makes me want to go back to high school.”

When the school opens in August, the $36.7 million campus – designed by Bay-IBI Group Architects of Houston and constructed by Dyad Construction of Houston – will provide students an opportunity to graduate with a diploma, earn free college credits and gain professional certification or a license in high-demand areas including pre-engineering/robotics, nursing, veterinary technology, automotive collision, welding, cosmetology, culinary arts and more.

The campus has been divided into six academies including: Health Services, Business and Public Services, Agriculture, Technology and Engineering, Construction and Manufacturing and Transportation.

The 247,000 square-foot structure features versatile collaborative learning areas for all students and teachers.

The school principal, Steven Fleming, explained that each space is fully functional. The unique architectural features of the campus, in addition to supporting student and teacher centered engagement practices, will serve as a host site for meetings and community events.

“Once our campus construction is completed, we will be able to host district staff development events and community meetings and showcase our campus and our CTE programs,” said Fleming.

For instance, the criminal justice program has been designed to not only provide students will the skills and knowledge to pursue a career in law, but it will also allow students to experience real-life trials in the school’s courtroom. The room features a jury box, public seating and seating behind the bar for a judge. The space will serve as a multipurpose room for government classes and actual court proceedings.

The cosmetology salon is an impressively sizeable room able to provide each cosmetology student with a styling station. The salon is strategically located in the corner of the building to allow paying customers easy access to the stylists. Each station is equipped with a large mirror and overhanging lights.

No need to go out for coffee – the campus will also have a student-operated coffee bar to generate revenue and give students hands-on experience.

According to Fleming, “When students graduate from CTHS, they will have the skills to successfully enter the work force.”

He hopes that the application-based school of choice will garner positive attention and spotlight the “outstanding career and technical education (CTE) programs and teachers in the school district.”

Fleming expects that the application-based school of choice will set a new standard of excellence that will have a profound impact on the entire Pasadena community. School district leaders, administrators and staff worked collectively with the community members and involved businesses and companies in the planning phase to ensure that CTHS students receive skills that will help the Pasadena area flourish.

Special Features

- Fitness Center including fitness equipment and programs designed to promote lifetime fitness, health and wellness

- Research Center with coffee bar to provide unique opportunities for research, reading, and collaboration on projects and career pathway learning

- 1:1 technology for all students. Students will receive a Windows 8 tablet for preparing, submitting and presenting their learning

- Specialized CTE classrooms and lab areas utilizing current industry-standard equipment and curriculum for that selected pathway

- Student-operated bistro operated by our culinary arts students

- Outdoor jogging trail with fitness stations

- Indoor and outdoor teaching theaters

- Cosmetology salon

- Courtroom

- Wireless learning environment

- Robotics testing and competition field