Topic: Distance Learning Begins; Thank You to Staff, Students and Parents

Dear Friends of the Southwest Technology Center District:

This week marks the beginning of a new and unexpected experience for SWTC students, teachers and school staff. Although we did not anticipate ending the year this way, I am proud of the distance learning plan SWTC has developed to allow students to learn from home. We know this change is difficult, and there is sadness about missing or delaying special events and activities. During this time, students and their families can count on SWTC to support them, both academically and emotionally.

While this health crisis has presented many challenges, it also has given us opportunities to help one another. SWTC donated multiple boxes of supplies to our community partner, Jackson County Memorial Hospital, from our Health Careers and Cosmetology programs. Additionally, our staff completed the massive task of developing a distance learning plan in just a matter of days. On behalf of the board and our community, I commend and thank all school employees for their hard work and commitment. SWTC has an incredible team.

The next few weeks will unveil a temporary new normal for us all. Kitchen tables will double as classroom/office spaces, and our world will be limited to the walls of our own homes. I would like to thank our students for partnering with SWTC on this journey. Teachers will be just a phone call, email or videoconference away.

We are fortunate to serve a community that values Career Tech education and understands that flexibility is necessary to meet the needs of students. A school is not a building; it is a family of caring, knowledgeable professionals making a difference for students every day. Our district is home to the best, and they will finish the school year strong.

Thank you for your support of SWTC.


Dennis Vernon
President, SWTC Board of Education

April 1, 2020

Southwest Technology Center 

As a school district, we are closely monitoring the situation regarding the increased spread of the Coronavirus Disease 2019. On March 11, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19, also referred to as the coronavirus, a global pandemic due to the broad spread of the virus to more than 100 countries.

There are no confirmed cases on any of our campuses at this time; however, as local, state, national and global public health recommendations shift to include mitigation of transmission, Southwest Technology Center is proactively taking steps that will help to protect the community. We are closely monitoring the current safety levels with the Oklahoma State Department of Health and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

In the event a confirmed case occurs in our school community, we will work with the Health Department to notify staff, students and parents/guardians within our community. At Southwest Technology Center, the health, safety and well-being of our students and staff are our top priorities. We will continue to provide updates as the COVID-19 situation continues to unfold. Thank you in advance for your cooperation and patience as decisions regarding this matter are made. The situation is being monitored and employees, students and parents/guardians will be notified as soon as any decisions occur. Should you have questions or individual concerns, please contact Southwest Technology Center at 580-477-2250

In response to the most recent CDC guidelines for social distancing, Southwest Technology Center locations will remain closed and training will continue in online learning environments for the remainder of the current school year for our full time programs, as our state continues to fight the spread of COVID-19.

Southwest Technology Center is continuously evaluating and developing online learning environments for short-term courses and training provided by the BIS Team. Individuals and companies will be contacted directly if an online learning option is available for training, classes or meetings. In-person training and on campus events will continue to be suspended through the end of April or until further guidance is confirmed.  This includes, but is not limited to meetings, events, tours, programs, conferences and social events at all Southwest Tech locations.

Should you have questions or individual concerns, please contact Southwest Technology Center at 580-477-2250 or our visit at


Dale Latham

Superintendent /CEO

Southwest Technology Center

Southwest Technology Center

711 West Tamarack Rd.

Altus, OK 73521


TOPIC: Long-term Tech Center Closure Recommended

Learning toContinue

March 26, 2020

Dear Southwest Technology Center Community:

State officials have announced that the Oklahoma State Board of Education voted and approved students not returning to the classroom for the remainder of the current school year as our state continues to fight the spread of COVID-19. We will instead provide a continuous learning plan that will allow all students to complete the school year at home through distance learning.

This decision does impact components of Oklahoma CareerTech technology centers. Southwest Technology Center is developing a continuous learning plan to ensure our students will continue to have opportunities to learn. Southwest Technology Center will begin distance learning for all full-time programs on April 6, 2020. However, the following adult programs will begin earlier: Licensed Practical Nursing, Aviation and Cosmetology. Students, both secondary and post-secondary, will receive a letter of this announcement in the mail, as well as, being contacted by their instructor. At this time, SWTC will have NO students on campus! Please continue to check our website news for changes and updates during this unprecedented situation.

Please stay safe. As always, we appreciate your support of Southwest Technology Center.


Dale Latham


Southwest Technology Center

SWTC Coronavirus Update

March 18, 2020

In order to carry out the emergency orders of Governor Stitt surrounding the Coronavirus state of emergency, the Southwest Technology Center Campus will be authorized by the Superintendent as closed for training programs until at least April 6, 2020.

Southwest Technology is currently evaluating online learning environments. Individuals will be contacted personally if an online learning option is available for training, classes, or meetings. At this time, adult students in third party licensing programs such as Aviation, Cosmetology, and Licensed Practical Nurse should expect to resume class in a modified format. More information will be given to these students via their instructors as early as next week.

In addition to suspending instruction, training and events, only Southwest Technology essential personnel will report to campus after Spring Break on March 23, 2020.

“The closure is an opportunity to better understand the impact of COVID-19 in Oklahoma while giving our students and staff a period of time to be protected from further community spread of the virus,” said Dale Latham, CEO/Superintendent at Southwest Technology Center. “The health, safety and well-being of our students and staff are our top priorities.” We will continue to provide updates on our website and all social media outlets as the COVID-19 situation continues to unfold. Thank you in advance for your cooperation and patience as decisions regarding this matter are made.

Dale Latham

Southwest Technology Center
Altus, Oklahoma

To: SWTC Students, Parents, Faculty and Staff 

From: SWTC Superintendent/CEO Dale Latham 

Date: March 12, 2020 

Re: COVID-19 Update 

The world health community continues to monitor the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic closely. At this time, no one knows how severe this outbreak will be. Given this uncertainty and the fact that the seasonal influenza (flu) virus is also widespread, we are taking proactive steps to address a number of business concerns. SWTC will remain open Friday, March 13, 2020 and will close for Spring Break March 16-20, 2020 and reopen on March 23, 2020, unless conditions change.

First and foremost, we want to maintain a safe campus and encourage practices protecting the health of employees, students, community partners, visitors, and others. We also want to ensure the continuity of business and school operations to support our sending schools and other partners. 

We ask all students and employees to cooperate in taking steps to reduce the transmission of communicable diseases throughout the campus. Students and employees are reminded of the following: 

  • Stay home when you are sick. 
  • Wash your hands frequently with warm, soapy water for at least 20 seconds. 
  • Cover your mouth with tissues whenever you sneeze and discard used tissues in the trash. 
  • Avoid people who are sick with respiratory symptoms. 
  • Clean frequently touched surfaces. 

Cleaning sprays and wipes will be provided to clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces. The SWTC maintenance staff will take extra measures in disinfecting the campus continuously through the day. 

Following the guidance from the Oklahoma State Department of Health any SWTC employee or student who travels outside the United States for Spring Break must notify SWTC before returning to school on March 23, 2020.

We will continue to monitor the situation closely and provide you with updates and other information as it becomes available. We are following the guidance of the OSHD, CDC, WHO, and other federal and state resources. 

If you have any questions, please contact Ericka Wiginton at or myself at


Dale Latham

SWTC Superintendent/CEO

(580) 477-2250 


The Southwest Technology Center Leadership team is always working to meet the needs of students and help them to reach higher excellence. For the first time, SWTC will be awarding the New Experience in Training Scholarship to one student per program, waiving up to 1000 hours of tuition. The scholarship is given to students who show leadership, hard-work, and a drive to complete their education. Recipients must have a high school diploma, have maintained a 2.5 GPA, or obtained a high school equivalency diploma. As a way to push students and prepare them for a job after graduation, the scholarship requires all recipients to maintain satisfactory academic progress, and must attend 90% of all class, clinical instruction, and lab.

Superintendent Mr. Latham says “The Southwest Technology Center is always looking for ways to be able to assist students in ways to be able to attend one of our programs that will enable the individual to be able to go out and get a job. Too many students do not know what they want to do for a career when they get out of high school so the SWTC Leadership Team decided to offer an opportunity for students up to the age of 21 to be able to return to SWTC to get any training that they may have missed by not attending during their high school years. That new opportunity is the NEXT Scholarship.”

 The SWTC Leadership team would like to congratulate the following recipient’s: Cherokee Barber, Trey Pierce, and Garrett Pride.  

SWTC Announces March Employee of the Month!

 Teresa is the administrative assistant and testing coordinator for Student Services.  She has quickly jumped into her position and is doing an amazing job! There isn’t anything she won’t do and when asked, always has a smile on her face! She helps with the BIS department when needed and is also willing to take on work outside the scope of her job duties.  We feel very fortunate to have Teresa work in the Student Services area and appreciate all she does on a daily basis. If you see Teresa around, be sure to congratulate her receiving EOM for the month of March!

Presenting Teresa with the EOM certificate is Emily Worrell with Southwest Crop Insurance. Thank you Emily for your continued support!

LPN Graduation 

On January 16, 2020, SWTC graduated 20 students from the LPN program. We would like to congratulate the LPN Graduating Class of 2020. We are so proud of each of you and all of your hard work!

Escape to SWTC

Such a fun day Escaping to SWTC with the Altus High School Sophomores!

Cosmetology SkillsUSA Competition 

Our Cosmetology SkillsUSA competed in competition yesterday and each competitor did very well! SWTC had six placers in the competition, and two that are headed to STATE!
Kelli Howeth- 1st Place, Post-Secondary Nails, State Bound
Monica Alvarez- 1st Place, Post-Secondary Barbering, State Bound
Diana Reinhardt- 3rd Place, Post-Secondary Esthetics
Kaylee Johnson- 3rd Place, Post-Secondary Hair
Brittany Ray- 4th Place, Post-Secondary Hair
Estelle Isaac- 6th Place, Secondary Nails
Congratulations to each student and good luck at state! We are so proud of each of you!

Automotive SkillsUSA

Congratulations to our Automotive SkillsUSA students on a job well done at their competition.
Mr. Bailey took four of his automotive students, and each student did an outstanding job!

From left to right; Brendan Sudderth, Hunter Welch, Braden Dollins, and Enrique Rascon.
Hunter Welch- 2nd Place and is STATE bound
Enrique Rascon – 6th Place
Special Thanks to the local AutoZone for donating prizes to award the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners

Who are the graduates of Oklahoma’s Career Tech system? They are nurse, roofers, aviation mechanics, cosmetologists, and welders. They might also be doctors, dentists, engineers, teachers, and attorneys! In these crazy economic times, Career Tech is even more important for Oklahoman’s.
Southwest Technology Center is one of Oklahoma’s 29 Tech Centers that are celebrating February as Career Tech Month. On February 18, Mayor Jack Smiley proclaimed February as Career and Technology Education Month. During the week of February 17-21, 2020, SWTC will celebrate Career Tech Week with activities such as spirit week, National Technical Honor Society inductee ceremony on Tuesday, February 18, 2020 at 8:30 and 12:30, along with our community luncheon on Friday, February 21, 2020 from 11:00-12:00. Oklahoma Career Tech will also sponsor events at Oklahoma’s State Capitol during the month.
On February 24, National Technical Honor Society inductees will visit the State Capitol and have the chance to see our legislatures hard at work.
According to the Association for Career and Technology Education, research shows that many of the country’s fastest-growing occupations require the technical skills taught in Career Tech education programs. Research also shows that among high school graduates entering the workforce, those with a technical education background earn more than those without this advantage.
“Career Tech Education is a very important factor for Oklahoma’s economic development” said SWTC superintendent Dale Latham, “workforce certification is the key to developing a trained workforce for all Oklahoma business and industry.”
Career Tech isn’t just for high school students. While the full-time programs are the foundation of the system, business and industry customers also benefit from the services we offer. These services include customized industry training and consulting, small business start-up and management safety, Safety Training, Oklahoma Bid Assistance for state, local, and federal contracts, and short-term certification courses to increase earning power, just to name a few.
All community members are invited to come out and celebrate Career Tech Week with SWTC. Whether you would like to join us on Friday for a luncheon, tour our campus to see students in action during the school day, visit with our Business Development professionals to find out opportunities for your business, or just too simply say hi; we welcome all to our campus for a great time!

Otha Grimes Scholarship

The Oklahoma CareerTech Foundation recently awarded 10 hardworking, and deserving students from Southwest Technology Center with the 2019 Fall Otha Grimes Memorial Scholarship Award! The foundation gave out a total of $3,800.00 in scholarships. SWTC would like to congratulate the following scholarship recipients:
Rowdy Morrow
Henry Owens
Joshua Fite
Benjamin Hampton
LaDonna Rone
Shelby Broaddus
Angela Gaulden
Adrianna Trevino
Jacob Balderas

Backpacks for Kids

SWTC staff was able to put together and deliver 75 backpacks of food to our sending schools to provide students with food for the holidays!

Construction SkillsUSA Competition 

SWTC sent students from our construction program to their SkillsUSA competition on February 11, 2020. We want to congratulate both Garrett Garrison (1st Place, Post-Secondary) and Jose Martinez (9th Place Secondary) on a successful day representing SWTC!

Metal Fabrication SkillsUSA Competition 

SWTC’s Metal Fabrication class competed in their SkillsUSA competition on February 11th, 2020. Each student performed very well at the competition and we had seven students place. Congratulations to each of the following student’s:
Trace George- 4th Place
Lawrence Easter- 8th Place
Kreighton Hulsey- 9th Place
Bryce Smith- 12th Place
Jackson Murray- 13th Place
Julia Brown- 15th Place

NTHS Induction

During Career and Technical Education Week, 72 Southwest Technology Center students were inducted into the National Technical Honor Society (NTHS). NTHS is the acknowledged leader in the recognition of outstanding student achievement in career and technical education. As a member school, Southwest Technology Center encourages higher scholastic achievement, cultivates a desire for personal excellence and helps top students find success in today’s highly competitive workplace. NTHS awards an increasing number of scholarships each year to its members. NTHS was created to honor student achievement and leadership, promote educational excellence in career and technical education and creating significant occupational opportunities for America’s top work-force education students. There are seven attributes in selecting the NTHS student and chapter advisor. SWTC counselor, Christie Rogers, met with instructors and students in the selection process to ensure the seven attributes were met by all NTHS selected students. The first of the seven attributes is “KNOWLEDGE”, which is the familiarity, awareness, or understanding gained through experience or study; this represents the knowledge gained through experience and study in the student’s technical program. “SKILL” is the use of knowledge to develop great ability and expertise necessary to make a positive difference in a particular occupational field. “HONESTY” is the quality of being truthful, trustworthy, and fair with everyone while at work or play. “SERVICE” is giving assistance and being ready and able to provide a helpful and useful act. “RESPONSIBILITY” involves the ability to act without guidance, or superior authority, and being answerable for their actions. “SCHOLARSHIP” is the distinctive mark of one who has mastered an area of learning, as reflected in the quality of his/her work, especially with respect to scope, thoroughness, and care. “CITIZENSHIP” is being entitled with full civil rights and exercising the duties, rights, and privileges of this statue. “LEADERSHIP” is the responsibility of serving as a guidance force, and directing the way by going first with courage and confidence.
Students from ten SWTC programs were selected for NTHS. The students selected from Automotive Technology are: Braden Dollins, Adrian Flores, Dominic Julian, Anthony Scott, and Hunter Welch.
Aviation and Aerospace Technology students are: Jacob Adams, Jacob Balderas, Dalton Bales, Javon Bostic, Jake Brown, Dennis Cardell, Justin Due, Melody Ellsworth, Joshua Ewald, Benjamin Hampton, Helen Hernandez, Steven Hernandez, Andre Huerta, Tristen Kent, Osmar Martinez, Joshua Maxwell, Sarah McGregor, Johnny Olivas, Henry Owens, Oliver Person, Garrett Pride, Noah Rathbun, Adrian Rodriguez, Brittany Ross, and Tom Turner.
Business and Computer Technology student is: Samantha Sanchez.
BioMedical Science students are: Karissa Dykens, Taeve Elliott, Luke Fourroux, Ary Garduño, Joshua Johnson, Christopher Martinez, Mackenzie Nall, Tyler Novosad, and Star Sims.
Construction Trades students are: Jose Martinez, Isabel Rascon, Ryan Sarten, and Norman Washington.
Cosmetology students are: Kaylee Johnson, Araceli Mingura, Monica Piña Alvarez, Brittany Ray, and Diana Reinhardt.
Health Science Technology I&II students are: Dylan Cress, Analiza-Marie Duenas, Marisa Gloria, Buddy James, Maci Jesseph, Rose Martinez, Crystal Padilla, Anel Perez, Abigale Ramirez, Maya Sanchez, Courtney Taylor, Serena Walker, Krista Duke, Emily Hughes, and Audre Ybarra.
Metal Fabrication students are: Julia Brown, Jackson Murray, and Bryce Smith.
Teacher Prep students are: Rebecca Borghini, and G’Anna Bruns
The program began with a welcome from Director of Student Services, RaChel Crume, with an explanation of the organization’s purpose. Colors and emblem was presented by past NTHS inductee’s. Students were then led in the NTHS pledge by counselor, Christie Rogers. RaChel Crume then presented membership certificates and pins. Family members and guests were also recognized for their dedication to helping students become successful in their scholastic achievement.