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Shooting for the Stars: CTE Student Spotlight

HHS Class of ‘24, Deborah Gandy’s journey into aerospace engineering

At Hutto ISD, success isn’t just an aspiration; it’s reality. Stories of students like Deborah Gandy illuminate the transformative power of Hutto ISD’s Career & Technical Education (CTE) programs. These initiatives equip students with certifications, preparing them for immediate employment or providing a competitive edge in college admissions.

In the realm of College, Career and Military Readiness (CCMR), Hutto ISD stands out among its peers. Recent data from the 2022 school year revealed an impressive 79.5% of graduates with CCMR indicators, surpassing the state average of 70%. This statistic speaks volumes about the District’s commitment to preparing students for life beyond high school.

As a young child, Deborah’s initial exposure to engineering was through her stepfather’s work. Her passion was further fueled during visits to Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla. and space camp at Space Center Houston. Inspired by the rich history of space exploration and the remarkable achievements of women in the aerospace industry, she embarked on a personal mission to carve her own path in this field.

Deborah has been part of the Ready for Early Access to College in Hutto (REACH) program since her sophomore year, allowing her to graduate high school with an associate’s degree. This program accelerates students’ education and provides them with a head start on their college journey. With the support and guidance of dedicated counselors, students like Deborah navigate challenges and chart their courses toward success.

Deborah’s story is just one of many within Hutto ISD, where students are armed with the skills, knowledge and certifications needed to thrive in their chosen fields. Upon graduating with a certificate and earning 60 college credit hours, Deborah is poised to complete a double bachelor’s and master’s degree in aerospace engineering at UT Arlington in just three years. Her aspiration to work at NASA in the space program reflects the boundless opportunities that await students who dare to dream big. In Hutto ISD, the pathway to success is clear, and every student has the opportunity to shoot for the stars towards their own bright and promising future.