Celebrating the CTE wing three months early | SummitDaily.com

Celebrating the CTE wing three months early

LORY POUNDERsummit daily newsSummit County, CO Colorado
Summit Daily/Mark Fox

FARMER’S KORNER The culinary arts, medical preparation and video production programs at Summit High School just got an extreme makeover with the opening of the new Helen Foote Career and Technical Education Wing.”The kids are so ecstatic. It’s been a few years in the working and it’s finally come to reality,” said Laura Dickinson, career and technical education director. “I’m so happy for our students that they can experience this, and I hope they’ll take advantage of the opportunities this provides.”Today, Summit School District is celebrating the early completion of the state-of-the-art wing that includes spacious rooms for the previously crammed classes. A ribbon cutting ceremony will be held at 3:30 p.m. at the school.After returning from winter break, students began to move over into the 7,622-square-foot facility that wasn’t expected to be finished until March. ProStart culinary arts teacher Terri Vantiger transitioned from a room designed for 12 to 15 students but filled with 20 to 25, to a spacious, accommodating professional kitchen set-up.”It was grossly overcrowded for a long time,” said Dickinson, adding that this semester will be used as a transition period, but next semester they are hoping to open more classes so they will no longer have a waiting list to get into the program.

Helen Foote’s granddaughter, Morgan Foote, is one of the seniors who’ve had the chance to use the culinary facilities, and today Helen’s four children plan on attending the event to see the wing dedicated in her memory.”It’s quite an honor,” said Bob Foote, Helen’s son who flew in from Stockton, Calif., for the event. “Words just can’t describe.”Her daughter, Cindy Eilts, of Dillon, added, “I don’t think there will ever be another woman that can replace her.”Helen, who passed away in December, began the home economics department at the school in 1958 and taught with the district for 22 years. In her class, students learned life skills including cooking, CPR, first aid and some nursing techniques, sewing, and etiquette – she even had a “Bachelor’s Survival” class.The Footes are hoping to put together a display case to go inside the wing with photos from Helen’s unforgettable mother/daughter teas or other snapshots of her work at the school. They were all impressed with what the facility will offer students after taking a tour in December and they hope Helen’s tradition of excellence will be continued there.”The knowledge the kids can get just in high school, the training, it is more like junior college level,” said Becky Foote, Bob’s wife.

More than two years ago, the process of planning and building the new wing began. School officials visited Johnson and Wales University and other culinary arts schools so they could find the best set-up for the school.”We didn’t just want to draw a wing. … We wanted to make sure we had the ideal layout, design and features,” Dickinson said. The wing houses the culinary arts program, medical prep, video production and a community/commons area, and each section resembles a “true work environment,” she added. Culinary arts has new cooking utensils and appliances. Medical prep has hospital beds and handwashing sinks, and video production has an advanced editing system. And while the construction cost is still in the close out process, the school district projects it to be within the original budget of $5.4 million. The space previously used for these classes is being remodeled for the Newcomers’ Center, Construction Tech program, Computer and Business technologies and the Theatre Tech program.This is the third project completed as part of the Summit County voter approved bond issue in November 2004. It also included a new roof for the Summit Education Center, and an addition and renovation at Frisco Elementary School. The final project to be completed by fall is the work at Summit Middle School.

Lory Pounder can be reached at (970) 668-4628, or at lpounder@summitdaily.com.Celebration ceremonyThe public is invited to a ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating the openingof the new CTE wing at 3:30 p.m. today at Summit High School.

Quick GlanceTimeline for the Helen Foote Career and Technical Education Wing at Summit High School 2004: Voters approved a bond issue to pay for the $5.4 million project. Planning began with trips to culinary arts schools to help find the best design for the wing.

2005: The design was cut back from 15,000 square feet because of the rising cost of building materials and decreased supply after Hurricane Katrina.2006: The groundbreaking took place in May.2007: Jan. 8, classes moved over into the 7, 622-square-foot building, completed three months ahead of schedule. Scholarship informationHelen Foote’s family has started a scholarship for an outstanding senior culinary arts student going on to college. They are hoping to be able to award a scholarship at the end of each year starting this graduation. Anyone interested in contributing to the scholarship can send a check to the Laura Helen Foote Scholarship Fund at Bank of the West, P.O. Box 648, Frisco, CO 80443

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