Whenever possible, states should embrace traditional forms of media such as radio, television and newspaper. Work through those outlets to share the CTE message. These are often free forms of publicity, and they can spread a message broadly and quickly. Three states have created resources they can distribute on their departmental websites or funnel through television, radio and newspaper outlets.

Alabama has named September as Workforce Development Month to bring more attention to CTE. The Alabama Department of Education has developed television and radio PSAs as part of the effort to promote Workforce Development Month. The television PSA included the brand tagline and drove home the CTE brand message. The office used the PSAs again for CTE Month in February.

The Minnesota Department of Adult and Career Education has found the new CTE: Learning that works for America brand to be a unifying agent for the state. In an effort to spread the CTE brand message, Minnesota State Colleges and Universities has developed three radio spots targeted at specific audiences: single mothers, displaced workers and high school students. All three radio spots do a terrific job of showcasing CTE as “learning that works.”

Tight budgets in Mississippi have forced the Mississippi Research and Curriculum Unit to get creative about sharing the CTE brand message. The office created podcasts. Her office created podcasts that have been placed on the Mississippi State University website. Podcasts are an economical way to communicate a message, and they may be picked up by media outlets interested in CTE, or they can be provided directly to anyone doing a story on CTE.

What can you do?
Local news outlets sometimes scramble for local interest stories when they have a slow news day. Consider putting together media packets to educate local journalists about CTE, and include local success stories. Send them press releases to make them aware of any CTE events that are taking place. Or, as these states have done, prepare radio spots or podcasts that can be electronically distributed to the news media.