Category Archives: Taos Education & Career Center

Learning about Financial Literacy

Students at the Taos Education & Career Center (TECC) got a hands-on lesson about managing money at the Writing and Reading for Career Pathways Class held Wednesday (Feb. 15).

Germaine Mitchell, Financial Empowerment Outreach Coordinator for the Guadalupe Credit Union and a TECC board member, led the three-hour workshopFL Lesson 2 funded by a grant. Employees from Guadalupe Credit Union and Taos Milagro Rotary volunteers assisted.

Mitchell told students that Guadalupe’s mission is to help community members with their financial needs. “We’re actually people who are helping other people,” she said.

The workshop began with an assessment of what students knew about managing money. Guadalupe reps then explained the ins and outs of financial literacy via a PowerPoint presentation.

FL lesson 5Mitchell said the cost of living affects a person’s financial future — and how the cost of living and wages can impact one’s chosen lifestyle.

After a pizza lunch supplied by Guadalupe Credit Union, students participated in the Reality Fair.

Each student was given a sheet listing the income for a certain position. They visited tables manned by volunteers from Taos Milagro Rotary, where they learned how much it would cost them to have, for instance, an apartment, internet, clothing, etc. Those costs were added to their sheets. Then there was the Wheel of Reality, where a spin could determine a plus — income from a part-time job — or a minus — an unexpected pricey car repair.

FL Lesson 3FL lesson 4At the end, the students were able to see if they made enough money to live the kind of lifestyle they wanted.

The workshop at TECC is one of several that Guadalupe Credit Union has held at schools in Northern New Mexico.

Guadalupe Credit Union is located at 115 La Posta Road, Taos. For more call 575-758-3899 or visit


Three questions with Gary Yamane

Gary Yamane is the first person that students and visitors are likely to meet when they enter the Taos Education and Career Center. He took a break from his busy day as TECC’s office manager to answer three questions.

What did you do before you came to TECC?

I was teaching a guitar class and working as the registrar at a small charter high school in Albuquerque. That was a year. Prior to that I taught at Moreno Valley High School in Angel Fire for 11 years teaching music. I was teaching guitar. I had beginner and intermediate classes. I had a rock band and taught a world music class.

What’s your role here at TECC?

I am the admin. assistant. So, I do the paperwork, the data base. I manage the office. All this copying you see here, I just did all that for Nina (Gonzales). It’s helping out teachers, helping Nina and Judy (Hofer). I make sure all the forms are up to date. I schedule the orientations. It’s all that background stuff that sort of glues things together.

What’s the best part about working at TECC?

It’s the students, of course. They’re just great. It’s so inspiring to see that people are interested in furthering their education and careers no matter what their age is — and that they’re dedicated to doing that. I’m proud to be a part of that.


Classes are Back in Session

After a holiday break and orientation, students at the Taos Education and Career Center (TECC) were back in class this week for the fourth session.

TECC assists students, age 16 and up, to prepare for their high school equivalency exams and what else they need to have a career. ESL classes are held in the evening.

On Wednesday, the Reading and Writing for Career Pathways class, co-taught by Nina Gonzales and Joan Livingston, got down to reading basics, such as finding the main idea and supporting details quickly in non-fiction text. They also worked with novels and briefly shared their experiences about reading.

The students also did career exploration on the Web via the computer lab and tablets.

Thursday and Friday, many of the same students have social studies and science classes, plus math.

So what careers are the students’ interested in pursuing? They range from the medical field, cosmetology, culinary arts, law enforcement, tattoo artistry to being business owners. TECC’s center will do its best to help them fulfill their dreams.

TECC is located at 115 Civic Plaza Drive, Taos. Phone: (575) 737-6200.