Enrollment in the Middlesex County Vocational and Technical Schools continues to increase as demand for career and technical education rises among students entering high school.
The 2015-2016 total student enrollment of 2,205 represents a new high in at least the last 10 years, with three of the five MCVTS campuses at full capacity.
Superintendent of Schools Brian J. Loughlin said this month’s open houses and information sessions for prospective students and their parents drew large crowds at all the campuses.
There were more than 1,000 people in attendance at the Middlesex County Academy for Science, Mathematics and Engineering Technologies open house in Edison and more than 900 at the Middlesex Academy for Allied Health and Biomedical Sciences open house in Woodbridge.
“We’re providing more opportunities for students in new and emerging career areas,” Loughlin said, pointing to a new career major in pre-engineering and manufacturing technology on the East Brunswick campus and expansion of the graphic design program – which has been in operation on the East Brunswick campus for a number of years – to the Perth Amboy and Piscataway campuses.
Assistant Superintendent of Schools Dianne Veilleux said there now is a waiting list for students interested in the multimedia art and design major on the East Brunswick campus and there are long waiting lists for both the Edison and Woodbridge academies.
“The demand for those programs far exceeds the capacity,” Veilleux said.
There also is a waiting list for students seeking to enter the ninth grade on the Perth Amboy Campus, which was named a National Blue Ribbon School in 2012.
The Edison Academy was designated a National Blue Ribbon School in 2013, while the Woodbridge Academy followed in 2014.
Earlier this year, the East Brunswick Campus, which includes East Brunswick Vo-Tech and the East Brunswick School of Career Development, was named a National Green Ribbon School in recognition of its “green” curriculum and sustainable building management practices.
Loughlin emphasized that the district has focused on a rigorous curriculum that ensures readiness for both college and careers.
“In the last school year, 235 of our high school students successfully completed one or more courses for college credit,” Loughlin said.
“This is an indication that they will be successful in college,” Veilleux added.
College acceptances for the Class of 2015 included such prestigious institutions as the Boston Conservatory, the Culinary Institute of America, Caltech (California Institute of Technology), Carnegie Mellon University, Cornell University, New Jersey Institute of Technology, New York University, Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania, Stevens Institute of Technology and the United States Military Academy at West Point.
“We are responding to both the interests of today’s students and the demand for a highly skilled workforce,” Loughlin said.
The district’s adult programs also are in high demand, with 436 people enrolled in full-time certificate programs and apprenticeships.
The MCVTS Adult School offers day programs in practical nursing and cosmetology and evening programs in electrical technology; heating, ventilation and air conditioning technology; manicuring; and plumbing technology, as well as apprentice training in business and office occupations, construction trades, electrical trades and manufacturing industries. The enrollment in the apprentice program increased by 15 percent to 232.
Contact: MCVTS Superintendent of Schools Brian J. Loughlin, 732 257-3300, Ext. 1910