West Virginia’s Vice Chancellor for Community and Technical College Education named Deputy Assistant Secretary at U.S. Department of Education
The West Virginia Community and Technical College System (WVCTCS) today announced that its Vice Chancellor, Dr. Casey Sacks, has been named Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education (OCTAE) at the U.S. Department of Education, which serves more than 25 million students each year.
This national appointment places Sacks in a leadership role that oversees programs critical to West Virginia’s workforce preparation efforts -- including the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act.
“Perkins is truly the sustaining force for technical education in both high school and community colleges here in West Virginia,” said Dr. Sarah Tucker, WVCTCS Chancellor. “This program underpins career and technical education in both our K-12 and postsecondary systems. West Virginia is extremely fortunate moving forward with Perkins planning because my team has had the benefit of Casey’s expertise over the past two years. Casey has served West Virginia’s students with such great vision and dedication, and I know she’ll continue to be our strong ally in Washington.”
In addition to administering the Perkins Act for both secondary and postsecondary education, OCTAE provides leadership, direction and management for over $2 billion in initiatives supporting career and technical education, adult education, correctional and re-entry education, and community colleges. It also works to build public support for community colleges and make training accessible and affordable for all Americans, while promoting efforts to help students complete their postsecondary certificates and degrees.
“Being an advocate for West Virginia’s community college students has been a tremendous honor,” Sacks said. “Technical education is on the rise in the Mountain State. West Virginia’s two-year colleges are equipping students with the real-world skills they need to be successful right now. Our job placement rates are high – in some programs, they’re at 100 percent. The success we’re seeing in West Virginia is something I’ll carry with me -- and work to build upon -- in this extraordinary new opportunity.”
As Vice Chancellor since 2016, Sacks has worked on statewide initiatives that range from education policy to workforce development, technology innovation, program recruitment and retention, grant management, and the delivery of community and technical college education.
Sacks began her own educational path at a community college, Red Rocks Community College in Colorado, before transferring to Colorado State University where she earned a bachelor degree in psychology. She also holds a master’s in clinical psychology from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs and a doctorate in higher education from Bowling Green State University.
She was also part of the inaugural class of Aspen Presidential Fellows -- a fellowship for community college excellence that partners with Stanford’s educational leadership initiative.
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