Career and Technical Education @ QCC More than a Major

Nurse working with technology in operating room

What is Career and Technical Education (CTE)?

CTE is an educational option that provides learners with the knowledge and skills they need to be prepared for college and careers. CTE gives purpose to learning by emphasizing real-world skills and practical knowledge within a selected career focus.

Students in CTE programs take specialized courses, in addition to required courses, and often can participate in internships, engage with mentors, and practice what they are learning through hands-on projects.

Facts About CTE (from the Association for Career and Technical Education)

  • 80% of high school and college students taking both CTE and college prep courses meet college and career readiness goals, versus 63% who are college and career ready through college prep courses alone.
  • 36% of STEM jobs require postsecondary credentials that CTE students can obtain within two years of high school graduation.
  • Graduates with technical or applied science associate degrees can out-earn bachelor's degree holders by $11k.
  • 6 out of 10 students plan to pursue a career related to the CTE area they're exploring in high school.
  • Students enrolled in CTE course are significantly more likely to develop problem-solving, project completion, research, communication, time management and critical thinking skills during high school.
  • 81% of high school dropouts say relevant, real-world learning opportunities, like CTE, would have kept them in school.
  • Graduates are twice as likely to be engaged at work if they had a meaningful internship or job while in college.

CTE Degree & Certificate Programs @ QCC

QCC offers a number of Career Technical Education (CTE) A.A.S. degree and certificate programs within the following National Career Clusters Framework (we offer programs in 8 of the 16 clusters). Click on each cluster category to view the degree and/or certificate program(s) supported.

Benefits for students in this program:

  • R.I.S.E. Program*
  • Videos on lectures and laboratory exercises for extra help.
  • Mentoring and workshops tailored to enhancing student understanding of the design and analysis of architecture software and design.

View the Architectural Technology degree program.

Benefits for students in this program:

  • R.I.S.E. Program*
  • Videos on lectures and laboratory exercises for extra help.
  • Mentoring and workshops tailored to enhancing student understanding of wireless technology, cybersecurity and computer networks.
  • Preparation for certification exam for FCC license (materials and exam fees paid for by Perkins).

View the Telecommunications Technology degree program.

Benefits for students in this program:

Opportunity to prepare and take industry-recognized certification exams. Preparation and exam costs all covered by Perkins grant.

Certifications include:

  • AVID Pro Tools Certified User
  • Melodyne Certification
  • FL Studio Training for Music Theory
  • U-He Product Specialist/Demonstrator
  • EastWest Sound Libraries Product Specialist
  • Fab Filter EQ Audio/Mastering Product Specialist
  • Wireless Microphone instruction (tentative-pending campus re-opening)
  • Dedicated Student success advocate to support students throughout the program

View the Music Production degree program.

Benefits for students in all of these programs:

  • R.I.S.E. Program
  • Opportunity to prepare for and take multiple Certiport Professional Certification Exams:

Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS)

Microsoft Technology Associate (MTA)

Quickbooks (QB)

  • Opportunity to prepare for and take multiple MEDCA Certification Exams:

Medical Billing and Coding (MBC)

Medical Administrative Assistant (MAA)

Students attend a workshop, prepare with Training materials and Practice exams, attended Practice exam sessions, and then take the Professional Certification exam. Exam fees and preparation material is FREE to students, paid for by Perkins.

There are prerequisite courses that must be completed by the student to qualify for these workshops.

To be eligible for certification, students should have completed the appropriate coursework in their major. Examples of the course includes:

BU-111 Computer Applications in Accounting

BU-850 Fundamentals of Microsoft Windows

BU-903 Medical Office Procedures

BU-906 Advanced Microsoft Office

BU-907 Word Processing

BU-917 Healthcare Information Management

BU-918 Medical Coding and Billing II

CIS-101 Introduction to Computers and Applications

CIS-102 Programming Fundamentals for Business

CIS-152 Computer Programming for Business

CIS-153 Microcomputer Operating Systems and Utility Software

CIS-201 Local Area Networking Management

CIS-204 Web Design

CIS-206 Spreadsheet Business Applications

CIS-208 Database Management Systems

CIS-251 Analysis and Design of Systems Projects

CIS-252 Application Development for Mobile Devices

CIS-254 Data Security for Business

View the Office Administration and Technology degree program. View the Office Administration Assistant certificate program.

Benefits for students in this program:

  • R.I.S.E. Program*
  • Opportunity to prepare for and take Certiport Professional Certification Exams:

Quickbooks (see prerequisites under Business Management & Administration)

Exam fees and preparation material is FREE to students, paid for by Perkins.

View the Accounting degree program.

Benefits for students in all of these programs:

  • R.I.S.E. Program*
  • ExamSoft: Digital Software to enhance learning and testing
    • For students requiring extra time on high stakes exams, ability for student to increase font size of questions, highlight critical information/or omit unnecessary information in question stem to better direct critical thinking when answering questions.
    • In addition, ExamSoft provides the ability to send feedback to students after high-stakes testing to enable students to self-monitor learning needs and remediate weaknesses. This can increase the pass rate for diverse learners. The platform provides rich analytic data on student performance so that improvements in teaching and testing can enhance the ability of students to meet competencies.
    • Adaptative equipment is available for students for performing nursing skills such as stethoscopes with amplifier (for hearing deficits), magnifiers for visual deficits, and devices that facilitate motor skills when performing procedures that require precise dexterity.
    • Mentoring Program In collaboration with faculty advisors, the Student Success Advocate addresses success strategies for students through workshops and a comprehensive mentoring program.
    • Enhancing Success and Preparation for NCLEX through Integration of PassPoint NCLEX from Wolters Kluwer Health, computerized testing that utilizes adaptive quizzing would mimic the NCLEX. The NCLEX exam is also paid for by Perkins funds.
    • Undergraduate Research: Students will be engaged in research with faculty mentors and participate in presenting a research poster at Evidence-based Research poster day in Spring 2021 with dual-joint partner schools.
    • Bridge Program: A faculty-led bridge program will be conducted during the semester break (Winter and Summer) for students transitioning from fundamentals Level I course to NU 102 - Level II course to strengthen academic and clinical skills to enhance student retention.
    • Faculty-led Workshops: Faculty-led workshops, to serve as a role model, mentor, and facilitator for nursing students’ mastery of difficult concepts and assimilation into the role of the nurse. The workshops will bridge students coming from rote memorization science courses to critical thinking-based nursing courses. The registered nurse will be able to provide real-world connections to key nursing concepts and enhance students’ ability to enhance their knowledge and perform basic clinical reasoning.
    • Enhanced Simulation Technology: In a simulation laboratory, Standardized Patients (SP) Actors will be used in face-to-face scenarios and virtual scenarios via video-conferencing platform. This will provide opportunities for students to attain satisfactory student learning clinical outcomes and develop clinical reasoning and judgement skills.
    • Task trainers are provided as tools for students that represent anatomical parts of the body and are used to teach students psychomotor skills such as connecting an IV with tubing to an intravenous device or applying a sterile dressing on a wound. The models will allow students to demonstrate clinical procedures repeatedly in a safe environment and gain competency and confidence in achieving the psychomotor tasks. (Injection jelly – life/form, Ventrilo scope-heart and lung sounds, intramuscular injections, arms for IV, urinary catheterization, wound care, tracheostomy care.

View the Nursing, Nursing - Dual/Joint with Hunter, Nursing - Dual/Joint with School of Professional Studies, Nursing - Dual/Joint with York degree programs.

Benefits for students in this program:

  • R.I.S.E. Program*
  • Free Textbooks, supplies, videos, equipment, online services such as “Mastering A&P” website.
  • Access to dedicated tutors for biology courses within program, study models and lending libraries.
  • Dedicated Student Success advocates to support and guide students with plans and tools for success.

View the Massage Therapy degree program.

Benefits for students in this program:

  • R.I.S.E. Program*
  • Opportunity to prepare for and take National Healthcareer Association Certification Exams
  • Exam fees and preparation material is FREE to students, paid for by Perkins.
    • Certified EKG Technician
    • Certified Phlebotomy Technician
    • Certified Clinical Medical Assistant
    • Health Coaching Assessment Based Certificate
  • Internship Opportunities
  • Instructional aides (tutors) to help prepare students for exams

View the Medical Assistant degree program.

Benefits for students in these programs:

  • R.I.S.E. Program*
  • Videos on lectures and laboratory exercises for extra help.
  • Mentoring and workshops tailored to enhancing student understanding of cybersecurity and computer networks.
  • Preparation for certification exam for CompTIA A+, AWS and CCNA (materials and exam fees paid for by Perkins).
  • Registration fee/course fee free (paid for by Perkins) for: AWS Certified SysOps Administrator Associate Certification, AWS Developer Associate Certification, AWS Big Data Specialty Certification

View the Internet and Information Technology, Computer Engineering Technology, Computer Information Systems (CIS) degree programs. View the Internet and Information Technology and Computer Information Systems certificate programs.

Benefits for students in this program:

View the Management degree program.

Benefits for students in these programs:

  • R.I.S.E. Program*
  • Videos on lectures and laboratory exercises for extra help.
  • Mentoring and workshops tailored to enhancing student understanding of mechanical theory and electrical circuit and network.

View the Electronic Engineering Technology degree program. View the Mechanical Engineering Technology degree program.

Hear what our faculty say about CTE programs at Queensborough

Punita Bhansali, Assistant Professor, Biological Sciences and Geology Department

Punita Bhansali, Assistant Professor, Biological Sciences and Geology Department

Spotlight: Medical Assistant Program

"A medical assistant plays a critical role in ensuring that medical offices run smoothly, and patients are satisfied. They are often considered the “first face” of the medical office and the jack-of-all-trades helpers. The 2-year Medical Assistant AAS Degree Program at QCC can lead to immediate graduation upon employment. There is a high demand for medical assistants and the demand will only increase with time. If you like the idea of helping patients, working with your hands, and being trained in several skills, this program is a great fit for you.

An AAS degree in Medical Assistant at QCC provides comprehensive training in both clinical and administrative skills, which the provides flexibility to the students as to where they can work afterwards. Throughout this program, there are various opportunities for students to obtain nationally recognized clinical and administrative certifications, which serve as tangible credentials that students can include in their resumes. The choice of different types of certifications provides additional flexibility and will also give students the opportunity to work across the spectrum of health care settings.

If you want to work in a health care facility, but you don't want to perform clinical duties, you can also consider the 1-year Medical Office Assistant Certificate program, which can lead to employment immediately upon completion."

Punita Bhansali, Assistant Professor
Biological Sciences and Geology Department

Medical assistants can work in various types of health care settings. The AAS degree training provides students with an overview of several types of skills, so a graduate of the program can find a setting that fits his/her particular interests and preferences.

It can also serve as a great bridge to more advanced professions, such as Nursing or Physician's Assistant. Moreover, this degree can open the door to other opportunities in health care facilities as well, such as patient care coordinator, phlebotomy technician, care coordinator, etc.

The courses in the Medical Assistant AAS Degree Program cater to different learning styles. Moreover, many of the courses are offered in the evenings, which makes it a great option for students who work during the day.

We also have a Student Success Advocate on board who can help students overcome barriers to their success.

We have created very strong relationships with health care facilities in the NYC area, and have thus been able to provide enriching internship experiences for our students. Students have the opportunity to participate in a phlebotomy internship, a business internship, and/or a general medical assisting internship. Having multiple choices provides our students with flexibility based on their particular interests.

Many of these partnerships and internships have led to jobs as well. Every MA student has the opportunity to work with the R.I.S.E. (Road to Interdependence and Student Excellence) team, an on-campus resource, for preparation in professional development and job readiness.

Additionally, the program offers training in various different skills and competencies, as well as several certifications (NHA Phlebotomy Technician, NHA EKG Technician, Certification in Clinical Medical Assistant, etc.), making our students marketable and prepared to work in the ever-changing health care industry.

*R.I.S.E. Program – Road to Interdependence and Student Excellence

Supporting Advancement in Education and Beyond

Pre-Enrollment to Completion

  • All students interested or enrolled in Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs get access to free support services from the R.I.S.E. Program.
  • This program has Career and Technical Education Specialists providing unlimited one-one one meetings to create personalized plans guiding student's academic and career journeys.
  • These plans are personalized to each individual student based on student goals, interests and strengths.
  • The R.I.S.E. staff has been providing Career support to QCC students for almost 10 years in various capacities.
  • R.I.S.E. hosts weekly workshops around employment readiness including Career Exploration, Resume Writing, Job Search Skills and Interviewing.
  • Students participate in group sessions to practice Communication, Leadership, Workplace Skills and Conflict Management.
  • R.I.S.E. students complete work-related projects to practice their workplace skills in a safe, judgement-free space.
  • Students get connections to internships, employment opportunities, experiential activities and special events based on their goals and interests.

Navigating life and school is hard enough, let us help you!

We are Career and Technical Education Specialists providing unlimited one-on-one meetings to create your personalized plan to guide your academic and career journey. We offer Mentorship, connections to Academic Tutoring, Skill-Building Workshops, Resume writing, internship opportunities and career exploration.

  • We have served over 400 QCC students in the last year. Leverage our knowledge of what employers want to strengthen your soft skills and get you where you want to be!

  • We customized our services to You, and we are here the help you along.

  • Person Centered Planning - Every student will be eligible to work with a Career and Technical Education Specialist to complete a Person-Centered Plan that is unique to them and work together to plan your academic and career journey. We can help identify the best program for you, best study strategy and any additional support that you may need.

  • Career Action Planning - Current students get access to our employment readiness workshops and support so you can get that resume in tip top shape, prepare for interviews in your industry and referrals for internships and employment opportunities!

Qualifications to enter the R.I.S.E. Program

If you:

  • Are a current student who needs support to succeed academically
  • Need some guidance to enter the workforce
  • Are looking for the right internship or job

Then THE R.I.S.E. Team is here for you! We meet you “where” you are:

  • Video Appointments available
  • Prefer a phone call? We can do that too!
  • Find us on Social Media: Coming Soon!
  • Fill out our enrollment form

This program open to ALL current QCC credit and non-credit (Continuing Education) students, as well as any prospective student needing guidance and support.


Frequently Asked Questions about R.I.S.E.

I am not a QCC student, but considering it and need help deciding what program is best for me, can I join?

  • YES! RISE has events each semester for students considering CTE Credit & non-credit programs and will work with you individually to help find the program right for you.

This is my first semester at QCC, am I eligible to join?

  • YES! We welcome new students and hope to help support your educational and career journey to graduation and beyond.

This is my last semester at QCC, am I eligible to join?

  • YES! The last semester is sometimes just as hard as the first semester. We will help you keep focused and support any transitional needs you may have.

I know what I want to do after I graduate, how can you help me?

  • We can help by supporting your development of self-marketing materials, making connections to industry partners, and providing wrap-around support as it relates to employment or transferring.

I don't know what I want to major in, how can you help me?

  • Through Person Centered Planning, we can help you explore your strengths, interests and values, and match them to potential fields of interest. We can provide you with industry insight on potential careers you may have in mind, or connect you to professionals and peers in your area of interest.

What is Perkins?

Carl D. Perkins, Congressman from Kentucky (from 1949-1984), worked with President Johnson's War on Poverty and supported the creation of the U.S. Job Corps, under the Economic Opportunity Act. The Job Corps provided free education and training for youths to learn a career, earn their high school diploma/GED and find a “good paying job”. Since 1964, the U.S. Job Corps has served over 2 million young people and continues to serve roughly 60,000 youths throughout the U.S. each year.

Perkins became chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Education and Labor in 1967 and during that time, sponsored and backed many of the modern public schools federal legislation such as the free lunch program and vocational education which is was known as the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act of 2006.

In 2018, Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act was reauthorized. There were some significant changes to the act in that:

  • It has increased funding so that more students can participate

  • It has shifted control from Washington to local authorities

  • It keeps businesses at the table to help validate the skills that are taught

Last year's application (2019-2020) was the “transition” year so that institutions could begin to prepare for the shift in how their state would interpret the act and issue the new guidelines. The current application (2020-2021) reflects the new direction which is goal oriented with emphasis on increasing the enrollment/participation of students with disabilities and from special population groups.

How does Queensborough Community College fit the profile to receive this funding?

How are the CTE programs at QCC identified to receive support from Perkins funds?

QCC's Perkins Administrative team, which includes the Office of Academic Affairs and the Office of Grants and Sponsored Programs, worked together to shape this year's ambitious proposal.

The 2021-2022 grant supports the following goals:

  • Goal 1: Support for Students with Disabilities and Members of Special Populations: Accessibility and Professional Development for Faculty, Staff and Students

  • Goal 2: Optimizing CTE Student Recruitment & Retention Strategies, Employment Services & Opportunities and Tracking the CTE Student Journey

    The Perkins team continues to build upon last year's strategies in the ongoing development of CTE-specific student support positions within Admissions, Academic Advising and the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities. These positions will also help in the recruitment and retention of CTE students as these individuals are being trained to understand all of the benefits available to CTE students and how to support these students once they have enrolled. In addition, the Perkins team will continue to build and expand the partnerships with employers who want to give our students internship opportunities or post-graduation employment. Most importantly, we will also continue the conversation with employers and industry experts to advise our programs, how we are preparing students and building realistic pathways. To track all of this great work, the team will continue to customize and optimize the database that we began in FY21.

  • Goal 3: Aligning QCC's CTE programs with current Labor Market needs

    QCC's A.A.S. degree programs within Music Production, Massage Therapy, Engineering Technology, Biology and Nursing are all offering the support and training for professional certifications relevant to their industries. In addition, the Perkins grant supports each of these program's efforts to keep current in these ever-changing fields with software, new and innovative training and connection and advising from industry partners. We also offer non-credit training for individuals interested in earning various levels of AWS certifications.

Professional Development Opportunities for CTE Faculty and Staff

Our partners, the Association for Career and Technical Education, offer a free training series on “important topics and approaches to delivering high-quality CTE instruction.”

Advance CTE: State Leaders Connecting Learning to Work, first established in 1920, is the longest-standing national non-profit that represents State CTE Directors and state leaders responsible for secondary, postsecondary and adult Career Technical Education (CTE) across all 50 states, the District of Columbia and U.S. territories.

Our Team

Faculty Directors

Continuing Education & Workforce Development Director

Campus Cultural Centers

Kupferberg Holocaust Center (KHC)Opens in a new window
Kupferberg Holocaust Center Opens in a new window

The KHC uses the lessons of the Holocaust to educate current and future generations about the ramifications of unbridled prejudice, racism and stereotyping.

Queensborough Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window
QPAC: Performing Arts CenterOpens in a new window

QPAC is an invaluable entertainment company in this region with a growing national reputation. The arts at QPAC continues to play a vital role in transforming lives and building stronger communities.

Queensborough Art GalleryOpens in a new window
QCC Art GalleryOpens in a new window

The QCC Art Gallery of the City University of New York is a vital educational and cultural resource for Queensborough Community College, the Borough of Queens and the surrounding communities.