Columbia Heights Education Campus

Principal: Maria Tukeva

CTE Programming Offered:
Students at CHEC have the option to join one of six CTE pathways. In addition to project-based learning coursework and the opportunity to earn industry-recognized certifications, CHEC Academy students will hear from guest speakers, participate in field trips to industry sites, and complete paid internships.

Bilingual Translation or Education
Bilingual Education or Translation emphasizes the need to provide students with a foundation for understanding and working with bilingual learners. Students will examine the nature of cross-cultural understanding and knowledge through two tracks within the program. During the program, students the option to engage in one of two tracks. The first track of the program will focus on increasing the pipeline of students into the translation field. Whereas, the second track will address the need to have an individual in a classroom to respond to the evolving needs of a diverse population.

Computer Science
Computer Science prepares students for career opportunities in an expanding computer science and digital workplace. Students will learn a diverse set of computational thinking concepts, fundamentals, and tools, allowing them to gain understanding and build confidence.

Internship Opportunities: WMATA, District Dept. of Transportation, iStrategy Labs

Students in the cosmetology pathway are exposed to opportunities in nail technician, aesthetician, and hair styling career options. The program discusses theory and clinical instruction in professional ethics, sanitation, human anatomy, facials, skin care, makeup application, manicures, pedicures, acrylic nails, haircutting, hair coloring, permanent waving, chemical relaxing, and all phases of hair care. Emphasis is also placed on job seeking/keeping skills, such as effective communication, customer service, teamwork, filling out a job application, building a resume, and interviewing techniques.

Certification: District of Columbia Cosmetology Operator

Early Childhood Education
The Early Childhood Education pathway will teach students the aspects of teaching and working with young children, from birth through elementary age. Students will explore career options and develop the characteristics of successful teachers and childcare providers through practicums. Applying theoretical concepts to real-life situations, students are able to take what they have learned in the classroom to their rotation experiences where they learn how to meet the developmental needs and interests of young children.

Certification: Child Development Associate Credential (CDA)

Engineering answer the acute need for STEM professionals in the US by educating high school students in the principles of engineering and providing exciting learning in the fields of electronics, biotechnology, aerospace, civil engineering, and architecture. Through classroom topics such as 3-D modeling, animation, mobile device applications, and coding, students will be prepared to develop solutions in a multitude of platforms and programming languages.

Internship Opportunities: Accenture, Pepco, ART Engineering, LLC
Certifications: Autodesk Certified Professional (ACP) in AutoCAD

Hospitality & Tourism
The Hospitality and Tourism pathway at Columbia Heights Education Campus, prepares high school scholars to excel in college and compete in the global workforce. The field of hospitality and tourism is one of the world’s largest and DC’s fastest growing industry. As a member of the National Academy Foundation network, scholars can learn, achieve, and advance as a professional along a chosen career path, i.e. hotel management, travel agent, human resources associate, restaurant owner, general manager, marketing director, and meeting and event planner. The pathway engages students by using Hospitality and Customer Service as a lens through which everyday problems are analyzed, approached and solved.The CTE scholars enjoy personalized learning experiences; with staff focused on individual specific college and career aspirations. Student supports such as mentoring, tutoring and counseling are incorporated in our student growth plans, and there is an opportunity for college scholarship at program completion.

Internship Opportunities: Destination DC, Marriott Hotels
Certifications: ServSafe, Customer Service, Guest Service Professional, Front Desk Representative


  • Courtyard by Marriott Convention Center
  • Hotel Association of Washington, D.C
  • Hilton Worldwide
  • Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide
  • Denihan Hospitality Group
  • Centerplate/NBSE
  • LaSalle Hotel Properties
  • The Minority Resource Centers
  • Marriott
  • Gaylord National Harbor
  • Georgetown University
  • Montgomery College
  • Northern Virginia Community College
  • Paradigm Event Management
  • Residence Inn Marriott
  • Urban Alliance
  • University of the District of Columbia Community College
  • State Farm

CTE Programs of Study

Point of Contact

Kishunda Penn
Director, Computer Science & Engineering Academies

Courtney Spinks
Director, Academy of Hospitality & Tourism

Deborah Buckmon
Teacher, Cosmetology

Genesis Docena
Teacher, Engineering

Christopher Henggeler
Teacher, Computer Science

Patrick Jackson
Teacher, Hospitality

Isabel Lainez
Teacher, Early Childhood Education

Lakshmi Peddy-Reddy
Teacher, Engineering (PLTW) & Math