Career and Technical Education (CTE) is a program of study that involves a multiyear program of study that integrates core academic knowledge with technical and occupational knowledge to provide students with a pathway to postsecondary education and careers.

A career cluster is a group of occupations and broad industries with similar features, such as Human Services. Within each cluster, there are multiple career pathways that require a common set of skills and knowledge, both academic and technical, necessary to advance within that pathway – ranging from entry level to management, including technical and professional career specialties.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Career clusters and pathways are NOT organized according to career interests but broad industry or economic areas, therefore, some jobs will appear in multiple clusters. For example, the job “accountant” is found in two clusters: a) Business Management and Administration and b) Government and Public Administration.

Massachusetts high schools that have a CTE program will offer tracks in one or more of the following career clusters.

The work of the agriculture, food, and natural resources career cluster includes a diverse set of products and processes—from raising crops used in food and textile production to breeding livestock and hunting wild game; from mining ore below the earth to hazardous waste removal and wildlife conservation. This cluster also includes researching, marketing, and selling these products. Click here to see what the Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources career cluster looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Agricultural & Natural Resources:

  • Food Scientist
  • Environmental Engineer
  • Horticulturist
  • Animal Scientist
  • Biochemist
  • Veterinarian Assistant

Pathways into Agricultural & Natural Resources:

  • Food Products & Processing Systems
  • Plant Systems
  • Animal Systems
  • Power, Structural & Technical Systems
  • Natural Resource Systems
  • Environmental Service Systems
  • Agribusiness Systems
Building and maintaining all kinds of structures is what makes the construction industry tick. People who work in construction build homes, manufacturing plants, and office buildings, as well as streets and highways, sewers, irrigation projects, and more. The industry also includes activities such as painting, electrical work, and plumbing. Click here to see what the Architecture and Construction career cluster looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Architecture & Construction:

  • Contractor
  • Architect
  • Electrician
  • Heavy Equipment Operator
  • Carpenter
  • Plumber

Pathways into Architecture & Construction:

  • Design/Pre-Construction
  • Construction
  • Maintenance/Operations

Radio and television broadcasts, Hollywood movies, and major concert tours are some of the glamorous settings of the Arts, A/V Technology, and Communications career cluster. But this sector also includes community theaters, print shops, art galleries, local music venues, film festivals, art fairs, and more. Click here to see what the Arts, Audio/Visual Technology, and Communications career cluster looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Arts, A/V Technology & Communications:

  • Actor
  • Video Producer
  • Journalist
  • Audio Engineer
  • Telecommunications Technologist
  • Printing/Graphics Technologist

Pathways into Arts, A/V Technology & Communications:

  • Audio/Video Communications Technology
  • Broadcasting, Film & Journalism
  • Performing Arts
  • Printing Technology
  • Telecommunications
  • Visual Arts

The business management and administration cluster represents careers in leadership, management, and support roles needed by organizations to operate successfully. Work in this cluster is involved in planning, organizing, processing, and decision making for the teams and departments that make up all kinds of organizations—from human resources to project management, and from operations to customer service. Business management and administration covers work in both for-profit corporations and not-for-profit organizations that typically serve social causes. Click here to see what the Business, Management, and Administration career cluster looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Business, Management & Administration:

  • Human Resource Administrator
  • Administrative Specialist
  • Financial Analyst
  • International Trade Manager
  • Entrepreneur
  • Accountant

Pathways into Business, Management & Administration:

  • Management
  • Business Financial Management & Accounting
  • Human Resources
  • Business Analysis
  • Marketing
  • Administration & Information Support

The education and training career cluster focuses on the activities, resources, and locations that provide all kinds of learning services. It includes public and private schools at every level—pre-K through high school—as well as colleges and universities. Libraries, museums and corporate training services are also part of this cluster. Click here to see what the Education and Training career cluster looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Education & Training:

  • Teacher
  • Principal
  • School Counselor
  • College Professor
  • Corporate Trainer
  • Coach

Pathways into Education & Training:

  • Teaching and Training
  • Professional Support Services
  • Administration and Administrative Support

The Government and Public Administration career cluster involves national and state government agencies and local government offices, the armed services, and elected offices that run city, county, tribal, state, and national governments. A primary goal of virtually all careers in public service is to help improve the quality of life and livelihood for the citizens represented, while supporting the betterment of the overall community. Click here to see what the Government and Public Administration career cluster looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Government & Public Administration:

  • Legislator
  • City Manager
  • Policy/Budget Analyst
  • Recreation/Parks Director
  • State/Federal Agency Director
  • Urban/Regional Planner

Pathways into Government & Public Administration:

  • Governance
  • National Security
  • Foreign Service
  • Planning
  • Revenue and Taxation
  • Regulation
  • Public Management and Administration

The primary function of the healthcare industry is to treat patients facing illness or injury—whether to cure or rehabilitate from a condition, to maintain wellness, or to provide comfort or palliative care to persons dealing with incurable conditions. A number of other industries relate closely to healthcare, including pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, and health insurance. In this industry, credentials matter greatly; jobs are generally defined by the education, certification, and licensure you possess, for example Certified Nurse Assistant, Licensed Practical Nurse, or Registered Nurse. Click here to see what the Health Science career cluster looks like on MV.

About Certified Nursing:

A Certified Nursing Assistant, or CNA, helps patients with activities of daily living and other healthcare needs under the direct supervision of a Registered Nurse (RN) or Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN). CNAs are also commonly referred to as a Nursing Assistant, Patient Care Assistant (PCA), Personal Care Attendant (PCA), or a Nurse’s Aid. CNAs can work in an inpatient hospital setting but are more commonly found in long-term residential facilities, rehabilitation centers, and adult daycare centers. Nursing assistants first and foremost must enjoy interacting with people on a daily basis in order to find enjoyment and fulfillment in this career. Some individuals use their knowledge as a CNA to bridge the gap to further their career and become an LPN or RN, using this career as a chance to learn more about the healthcare world and gain additional real-world application and knowledge. CNAs are in high demand on MV and if you would like to be trained to be a Certified Nursing Assistant through ACE MV, please click here to learn more about our certification program.

Sample Occupations within Health Science:

  • Pediatrician
  • Physical Therapist
  • Radiologic Technologist
  • Registered Nurse
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Medical Assistant
  • Hospital Administrator

Pathways into Health Science:

  • Therapeutic
  • Information
  • Environmental
  • Diagnostic

The hospitality and tourism industry provides the experiences that we look forward to for dining, recreation, major life events, or just to get away for a little while. Most of us interact with hospitality workers every day, whether grabbing a cup of coffee, dining out, or catching the latest blockbuster film. The hospitality and tourism industry includes a wide range of facets, including lodging, restaurants, event planning, theme parks, transportation services, cruises, travel guides, casinos, movie theaters, and tourism. The industry plays a particularly big role for travelers, as hospitality and tourism workers help plan trips and make travel reservations, operate hotels and amusement parks, and guide tour groups. Click here to see what the Hospitality and Tourism career cluster looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Hospitality & Tourism:

  • Lodging Manager
  • Chef
  • Travel & Tourism Manager
  • Food Service Manager
  • Restaurant Manager
  • Leisure & Entertainment Manager

Pathways into Hospitality and Tourism:

  • Restaurant and Food/Beverage Services
  • Lodging
  • Travel and Tourism
  • Recreation, Amusements and Attractions

The foundation of Human Services work is to meet basic human needs and protect the most vulnerable in our society. The mission of social services organizations spans disaster relief to substance abuse treatment, pre-school child care to community development. Human services organizations provide supports such as food, shelter, income, and mental health services, to people experiencing major life struggles and help them to stabilize and recover health and economic security. The Human Services career cluster also includes the personal care sector and funeral-related services. The work is often conducted in state and local government offices and non-profit organizations of many kinds, for example mental health clinics, child and youth services, daycare centers, public health education groups, vocational rehabilitation agencies, employment programs, and homeless shelters. Click here to see what the Human Services career cluster looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Human Services:

  • Social Worker
  • Psychologist
  • Child Care Worker
  • Substance Abuse Specialist
  • Employment Specialist
  • Psychotherapist

Pathways into Human Services:

  • Early Childhood Development and Services
  • Counseling and Mental Health Services
  • Family and Community Services
  • Personal Care Services
  • Consumer Services

With the integration of the Internet in most aspects of daily life, our collective use and reliance on information technology grows on a continual upward arc. Vast amounts of data stream through technology used for business operations, governance, education, and entertainment; keeping the information flowing and equipment working properly is the job of information technology—or IT—professionals. IT offers a great variety of both creative and technical careers, from designing and developing software applications, databases, and websites to providing customer support and ensuring information security. In addition to careers in the IT industry, IT careers are available in every sector of the economy – from Financial Services to Medical Services, Business to Engineering and Environmental Services. Anyone preparing for an IT career should have a solid grounding in math and science.More so than perhaps in any other industry, many IT jobs can be performed remotely, as long as a reliable Internet connection is available. Click here to watch a short video about the IT career cluster.

Sample Occupations within Information Technology:

  • Software Engineer
  • Network Administrator
  • Web Designer/Developer
  • Database Manager
  • Technical Writer
  • Multimedia Producer

Pathways into Information Technology:

  • Network Systems
  • Information Support & Services
  • Interactive Media
  • Programming/Software Engineering

The law, public safety, and corrections career cluster is all about protecting and serving the public. People working in this sector deal with protecting life and property, enforcing laws, providing legal counsel, sentencing defendants, and rehabilitating offenders. Government organizations at the city or county, state, and federal levels are the major employers in public safety. First responders such as fire and police departments, share a mission to keep people and property safe, along with workers that patrol city streets, coastal waters, ski slopes, and swimming beaches. A more security-conscious society and concern about drug-related crimes should contribute to the increasing demand for employees in this cluster. Click here to watch a short video about the Law and Public Safety career cluster.

Sample Occupations within Law & Public Safety:

  • Attorney
  • Fire Fighter
  • Police Officer
  • School Resource Officer
  • Judge
  • Paramedic
  • Paralegal

Pathways into Law & Public Safety:

  • Correction Services
  • Emergency and Fire Management Services
  • Security and Protective Services
  • Law Enforcement Services
    Legal Services

The manufacturing industry produces nearly all the products and equipment used in daily life. From commercial products such as concrete, metals, chemicals, and machinery, to personal products we use directly, like computers, clothing, toys, and even food and beverages; all are produced by manufacturers who either operate machines and robots or work manual processes. In essence, manufacturing is the transformation of materials or parts into new products. All careers in Manufacturing require you to have a strong mechanical ability, specialized skills, communication skills and computation skills. You will be required to apply problem solving, make decisions, and work in a team environment. Click here to watch a short video about the Manufacturing career cluster.

Sample Occupations within Manufacturing:

  • Machinist
  • Manufacturing Engineer
  • Automated Process Technician
  • Production Engineer/Technician
  • Welding Technician
  • Quality TechnicianPathways into Manufacturing:
  • Production
    Production Planning and Control
  • Manufacturing Engineering
  • Industrial Maintenance

The marketing career cluster focuses on influencing consumers’ buying behavior and generating sales for products and services. Just about every type of organization, from your corner grocer to regional banks, public universities to multinational corporations, participates in marketing, in some way. Marketing is based on researching consumer needs and preferences and creating strategic advertising campaigns to tap them, using TV, radio, magazines, newspapers, social media, and websites. Sales is considered part of the marketing cluster, and involves the exchange of money for a product or service. Companies may sell services to other companies, a manufacturer may sell products to distributors, and retailers may sell items to customers. Click here to see what the Marketing career looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Marketing, Sales & Service:

  • Sales Associate
  • Interior Designer
  • Marketing Director
  • Buyer
  • Real Estate Broker
  • Customer Service RepresentativePathways into Marketing, Sales & Service:
  • Management and Entrepreneurship
  • Professional Sales and Marketing
  • Buying and Merchandising
  • Marketing Communications and Promotion
  • Marketing Information Management and Research
  • Distribution and Logistics
  • E-Marketing

The science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) career cluster is about expanding our concepts of the universe and inventing the future. It centers on applying scientific methods, new technologies, and creative problem-solving skills to improve both natural and human-built worlds. While all STEM fields involve solving problems and innovation, the work settings for STEM roles vary widely. For example, research and development scientists often work in labs to develop pharmaceuticals, biofuels, and other products, while IT workers may design websites from home offices. Engineers may split their time between an office—to collaborate with colleagues and work on project plans—and a jobsite—where they may supervise construction, meet with contractors, and ensure safety. Historically, women and people of color have been underrepresented in STEM fields, particularly in IT, math, and engineering. Click here to see what the STEM career cluster looks like on MV.

About Offshore Wind:

In December 2016, Deepwater Wind completed the commissioning of the Block Island Wind Farm, marking a milestone as the nation’s first commercial offshore wind project. With funding from MassCEC, ACE MV launched its first cohort in the Offshore Wind Technician Certificate program in January 2020. Because we developed relationships with Bristol Community College and key on-Island partners, Martha’s Vineyard now has a curriculum, course sequence, adjunct professors, and a calendar in place to support year-round resident training for Massachusetts’ burgeoning offshore wind industry. Our first attempt at community outreach and student recruitment was extremely successful, enrolling 18 students for the technical course Electrical Machinery, with 14 of those interested in pursuing the complete academic certificate.

We are excited to expand this program to build a competent, prepared—and local—offshore wind workforce that supports Vineyard Wind’s commitment to recruit a Martha’s Vineyard technical workforce. Through our partnership with MV Regional High School, we will expand dual-enrollment for juniors and seniors; we will also provide young adults with access to a specific career pathway in offshore wind and clean energy, and support adult “re-learners” with the ability to improve skills and transition into the local wind workforce.

Our vision is a community-driven educational priority that supports and prepares a local workforce ready for specific careers in offshore wind for the multiple projects that will be located on and near Martha’s Vineyard in the coming 10 to 15 years. If you would like to be trained to be an Offshore Wind Turbine Technician through ACE MV, please click here to learn more about our certification program.
Sample Occupations within STEM:

  • Chemical Engineer
  • Mathematician
  • Bio Technologist
  • Offshore Wind Turbine Technician
  • Electrical Engineer
  • Biologist
  • OceanographerPathways into STEM:
  • Science and Mathematics
  • Engineering and Technology

The Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics industry is all about moving people and things from one location to another, quickly, safely… and at a low cost. Transportation methods include aircraft, railroads, waterways, over the road, and through pipelines, as well as warehousing and storage. Workers in this industry design transportation systems, operate or repair equipment, plan how to move materials, and take care of storing products. Automation helps make aspects of the industry more efficient, such as bar codes that track goods for shipping and distribution. Pilots of ships and aircraft depend on automated navigation equipment to operate safely. GPS technology is heavily relied on in many jobs, although workers need to troubleshoot changing conditions, and make adjustments, often more quickly than technology is able to do. Click here to see what the Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics career cluster looks like on MV.

Sample Occupations within Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics:

  • Air Traffic Controller
  • Train (Rail) Dispatcher
  • Boat Captain
  • Truck Driver (Tractor-Trailer)
  • Subway Operator
  • Amazon Delivery Driver
  • UPS Package Handler

Pathways into Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics:

  • Transportation Operations
  • Logistics Planning & Management Services
  • Warehousing & Distribution Center Operations
  • Facility & Mobile Equipment Maintenance
  • Transportation Systems/Infrastructure Planning, Management & Regulation
  • Health, Safety & Environmental Management
  • Sales and Service