BECKLEY (WOAY) – Each year in December, career and technical education students and instructors at
the Academy of Careers and Technology design, sometimes build, and decorate a Christmas tree that
represents the occupational area for which they are training. A festive holiday tradition since 2000, the
Festival of Trees highlights the occupational programs.
The Festival of Trees is free and open to the public on Tuesday, December 19, from 5:00 – 8:00 PM
on the school’s campus at 390 Stanaford Road in Beckley. Twenty-four trees will grace the school’s
lobby during this year’s event. Refreshments will be served and door prizes awarded.
Representatives from other educational institutions, local businesses, community groups, and media
outlets will review the trees in advance of the open house and award Best of Show to the tree that
best exemplifies its occupational area.
Members of the community attending the Open House will be given tokens to vote for their favorite
trees. A “traditional” trees utilizes a real or artificial tree. A “nontraditional” tree is built from
unconventional materials such as wood, metal, or brick.
A third, special category was introduced in 2015, the Community Spirit Award. This year the Academy
of Careers and Technology and ACT’s local SkillsUSA Chapter is teaming up with the Toys for Tots
campaign. For each new unwrapped toy donated, individuals will receive a special token that can be
used to vote for any tree the night of the Festival. The tree receiving the most special tokens will
receive the Community Spirit award.
ACT is again hosting a virtual Festival from Tuesday, December 19, through midnight Thursday,
December 21, 2017 on its Facebook page at https://facebook.com/wvact. Winner of the virtual vote will
receive the Facebook Favorite award.
All winners proudly display the “traveling” trophy for the coming year.
Mark your calendar now!
About the Academy of Careers and Technology
Opened in 1977, ACT has long been recognized as a primary work-force provider and a significant
educational institution in Southern West Virginia and recently received the West Virginia School of
Excellence award (West Virginia Department of Education’s highest rating). To attain and maintain
such distinction, the administration, faculty, and staff work in close cooperation with partnering
secondary schools and through collaborative efforts involving students, parents, businesses, industry,
labor, and higher education.
Programs are diverse and challenging. Instruction is rigorous, designed to adapt to the needs of
diverse learners. Students are encouraged to actively explore challenging technical studies that
enable them to see the relationship between course content and future career plans. For more
information, please visit the school’s website at https://wvact.net or Facebook page at