BOCES Past, Present and Future - Building Tomorrow’s Workforce Today

On May 26 the students met Washington County Fair President Harry Booth and President of the Washington-Saratoga-Warren-Hamilton-Essex Board of Cooperative Educational Services (WSWHE BOCES) John Rieger to show them the progress made so far. Both Mr. Booth and Mr. Rieger graduated from BOCES programs and were keen to connect with current day students and to chat with them about their futures.


Students in both programs have been working with the Washington County Fair to develop a new and safe parking/camping area. Students in the Environmental Conservation & Forestry are using their skills to assess, trim and or remove poor quality & dangerous trees. They are flagging trees to be kept that are straight and in good health.  

The students are removing the poor quality and dangerous trees using chainsaws and pruning saws. Trees and brush removed are being chipped with CTE's new Morbark Eeger Beever 1415 chipper. The chips are being stockpiled for the use of walkways for cattle during the 2021 Washington County Fair.

Environmental Conservation & Forestry Instructor Dennis Flynn says, “it is a great experience for students to work on a community service project from start to end. These students get to see how important the work they are doing is for safety and the aesthetics of the project.”

Heavy Equipment Operation and Maintenance students are gaining valuable seat time by operating backhoes, an excavator and a dump truck to assist with the clearing and grubbing of stumps and other items needing to be cleaned from the hedgerow.  


The project helps students to understand the importance of coordinated work on a job site with another agency. 


“The students are learning real world site safety concerns and other real world experiences that happen on job sites outside of our school setting, ” says Instructor Greg Hammond.


WSWHE BOCES President John Rieger, says “these young men and women are putting the skills they’ve acquired in CTE back into the community and preparing for their career at the same time.” 


With help wanted signs posted throughout the region, and employers anxious to fill vacancies to rebuild after COVID-19, skilled workers are in demand now more than ever. 


“I am proud to say that these students will be fully prepared for their chosen field and contribute to the region’s workforce,” added Rieger.


CTE is happy to support community service projects as it helps students to understand the importance of giving back to their community. CTE will hold an interactive career display during the Washington County Fair August 23-29.


WTEN stopped by during the visit. Click here to see their coverage. Click here for full photo gallery.