Just one mention of CEC to Carolyn Nunez and she can’t hide her smile. A 1988 graduate of North High School, Carolyn spent many semesters taking classes as a part-time student, and one year as a full-tine student at CEC. It was the highlight of her high school career. When asked about what made it the most memorable, she replied, “The teachers. They made it what it was.” She still remembers the man who made the biggest difference for her. “Mr. Justice,” she said. “Ken Justice was our radio broadcast teacher and he made the class so real for us.” As a student, she had the opportunity to go outside of the school and do interviews—she interviewed the famous “three amigos” from the Denver Broncos—and then come back to CEC to edit the tapes (it was reel to reel back in those days) and put on a radio show for the school to hear. For her, it didn’t feel like school. It felt like real life.
Nowadays, Carolyn works for Noble Energy as an Engineering Technician, but she still believes her CEC education got her thinking about her career path and gave her the confidence to succeed post high school. She even did a short stint working in a communications internship and used the skills from her radio broadcasting and TV production classes.
And now she is bringing the process full circle, bringing Noble Energy on board with CEC as a community partner. Employees from the company will participate in CEC’s Saturday school program, mentoring students in math and science. Noble is also making a financial donation to the school to help with various programs. “I wish I had someone to mentor me,” she said, referring to the CEC/Noble tutoring opportunity . “I probably would have been on a different path. I always wanted to be an astronaut, but I had a math teacher that told me I should just take my home ec classes and said I wasn’t good at math and steered me away from that.”
Noble is dedicated to making our community better and CEC is fortunate to be part of that solution. “We’re not just giving money away to check a box. We’re looking at it and asking, ‘is it effective?,” Carolyn said, “and I think that CEC is a place where it can be. We’re looking forward to this partnership.”