About Career and Technical Education Center
As a program of The Learning Centers at Fairplex, a non-profit organization under the
Los Angeles County Fair Association, CTEC has a mission to help fulfill unmet educational needs
by educating and preparing students for real-world careers and professional success to help them
make a positive contribution to the community. Through hands-on classroom instruction by
credentialed instructors who are industry professionals, engagement with industry experts from
the surrounding communities, and interaction with real work sites and professional environments,
CTEC provides innovative learning experiences that give students the necessary skills to enter
the workforce or continue on the pathway of higher education.
The CTEC mission is to:
- Create a relevant year-round educational platform utilizing the unique resources of the 487
acres of Fairplex, home of the Los Angeles County Fair.
- Present a hands-on learning experience that is focused and appeals to our state’s
diverse labor market.
- Fulfill our responsibility of community service, by establishing neighborhood partnerships
with public and private-sector organizations that share our passion for interactive
learning, in order to provide the very best educational experience imaginable.
- Support students to graduate from high school with a full range of options including
industry certifications, apprenticeships, formal job training, military service, and/or
two or four-year college opportunities.
CTEC offers career pathway courses with focused training in Arts, Media & Design, Automotive,
Agriculture, Energy & Utilities, and Hospitality. Each career pathway consists of several
courses that give students the opportunity to not only gain hands-on experience and exploration
of career options, but also includes the development of employability skills to secure a job.
As we look at the future of available education options for high school students, CTEC is on track to
becoming a premier provider of career technical education classes that support high school
students and school districts in the local communities. By continuing to offer courses focused
on career training, CTEC will provide hands-on, relevant learning opportunities for youth in the
How to Apply
- Visit the CTEC’s website, www.fairplex.com/tlcfairplex/programs/ctec
- Click on the career paths shown in the sub navigation menu for an overview of each pathway
(Arts and Media Design, Automotive, Agriculture, Energy and Utilities, Hospitality,
- To view the current course schedule, click on How to Apply: Application PDF.
- To enroll in a course, download the Application PDF, complete the form and submit it to the
CTEC office by email at CTECapps@fairplex.com
or fax (909) 865-4080.
- Once your application is received, we will confirm your enrollment via email and/or phone.
- Registration is open for the spring 2020 session.
- Classes will not be in session on January 20, February 10, and February 11.
January 23, 2020
Applicant must be at least 16 years of age and/or a junior and senior in high school to
receive ROP CTE credits.
- Ceramic Manufacturing
- Energy & Utilities
All courses are subject to change.
- Automotive, Introduction
- Auto 102 - Brakes and Suspension
- Auto 103 - Engine Repair
- Ceramic Manufacturing I
- Farm to Table *
- Energy and Power Technology *
- Urban Farming
- Welding, Introduction *
- Water Distribution
Arts and Media Design
The Art, Media, and Design pathways focus on creation, research, exhibition and
communication of fine art and design. The curriculum is designed to prepare students for
continued study and work in college or in the workplace. Students will explore concepts and
build skills that can be applied to contemporary art practice in any field.
3D Visual Design – Ceramics/Hand Building
Imagine learning about creating art in a real world art center with hands-on education
in design, creation and exhibition of art. 3D Visual Design provides a welcoming and stimulating
atmosphere for students to learn the fundamentals of ceramic materials. Throughout the course
there will be an emphasis on craftsmanship, creativity, business planning and an appreciation
for the elements that are inherent to well-made, functional pottery. Students will learn
the methods of throwing, mold-making, decorating, glazing and firing pottery. Teachers work
one-on-one with students to help them learn by observation to produce works of art that are
functional and/or abstract. In addition, students will be provided the opportunity to nurture
creative development by participating in art shows and events to showcase their work. Students
will gain knowledge of the expertise necessary to create a portfolio, market their artwork and
approach gallery owners and art show organizations.
2D Visual Design
2D Visual Design class provides a welcoming and stimulating atmosphere for students to
learn the fundamentals of 2 dimensional art designs. Students will learn the basic techniques of
drawing and painting, including rendering from life, as well as, the imagination. Students will
explore a variety of traditional drawing media including pencil, charcoal, conté crayon
and ink. After extensive instruction in the elements of art and the principles of design,
students will apply newly acquired skills on a variety of projects, often with a commercial,
real-world application. Projects will include nature sketching, architectural illustration,
lettering and poster design, portraiture and still life. Special attention will be given to the
business of art and instruction will include the presentation, exhibition and selling of
artwork, with a culminating show at the end of the course.
The apparel industry is the 2nd largest industry in California and is continually changing and
growing. The Fashion Design class is designed to introduce students to a career in the field of
apparel design and construction. Students will be introduced to concepts in use of patterns and
clothing designs, selection of appropriate fabrics, and design construction techniques. Students
will develop their own sense of style as they learn what it takes to gain a foothold in this
competitive industry by operating specialized equipment used in the fashion industry and using
merchandising strategies to market their creation. Students will gain knowledge of the expertise
necessary to create a portfolio by the end of the course.
Automotive - AXC
The Alex Xydias Center for Automotive Arts (AXC) program has been
developed in collaboration with automotive business owners and classic car enthusiasts from the
Inland Valley. This two-year automotive program allows students to gain the necessary confidence
and hands-on experience needed to enter the automotive industry. Students will progress through
a series of classes, starting with the Auto 101 course to acquire basic skills and moving into
classes on brakes, electrical and engine repair. Students will work with instructors who are
industry-certified automotive technicians and are ready to help students move on to advanced
study. Students will have the opportunity to take and receive National Automotive Service
Excellence (ASE) Certifications that can help them acquire entry-level jobs in the automotive or
specialty shop industry. The curriculum is designed to prepare students for continued study and
work in college or in the workplace.
- Automotive 101 – Intro to Automotive
Is the first class in the two-year automotive program. In this one semester
class, students will develop workplace attitudes and behaviors, identify and demonstrate
basic safety standards, work area care techniques and vehicle maintenance skills.
- Automotive 102 – Brakes & Systems
Is the second class in the two-year automotive program. In this one semester
class, students will receive training in diagnostics and repair of disc, hydraulic and
drum brake systems, and trouble-shooting of master cylinders. Students enrolled in this
course will receive hands-on, practical experience that will prepare them for the
Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) A-5 Brake Certification Test, which will demonstrate
their knowledge as an automotive professional and will lead to securing employment in
the automotive industry.
*Students who successfully complete Automotive 101 will be eligible to enroll in
- Auto 103 – Engine Repair
Engine Repair will provide students with the basic skills and knowledge in
diagnosis and repair of the general engine, cylinder head and valve train, engine block,
and lubrication and cooling systems, as well as test specifications, inspection, and
service of the fuel, electrical, ignition, and exhaust systems. Students enrolled in
this course will receive hands-on, practical experience that will prepare them for the
Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) A-1 Engine Certification Test, which will
demonstrate their knowledge as an automotive professional and will lead to securing
employment in the automotive industry.
*Students who successfully complete Automotive 102 will be eligible to enroll in
- Auto 104 – Electrical and Electronic Systems
Will give students the basic knowledge of tools and procedures to test the
electrical system for common problems, and identify electrical components, circuit
protection devices, and electrical schematics. Students will also conduct voltage drop
tests and determine the recommended tools and procedures to test for circuit and battery
drain problems. Students enrolled in this course will receive hands-on, practical
experience that will prepare them for the Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) A-8
Electrical Certification Test, which will demonstrate their knowledge as an automotive
professional and will lead to securing employment in the automotive industry.
*Students who successfully complete Automotive 103 will be eligible to enroll in
- Auto 201 – Engine Performance and Diagnostics
Will give students the knowledge to diagnose sophisticated drivability and
emissions-related problems on automobiles, SUVs, and light duty trucks. Students
enrolled in this course will receive hands-on, practical experience that will prepare
them for the Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) L1 Advanced Engine Performance
Specialist Certification Test, which will demonstrate their knowledge as an automotive
professional and will lead to securing employment in the automotive industry.
*Students who successfully complete Automotive 104 will be eligible to enroll in
The Interview Process
AXC instructors assess dedication, and makes sure each student is committed to
completing the two year program before awarding them with a scholarship.
AXC instructors are skilled ASE certified industry professionals who hold or are obtaining a
Designated Subjects Career and Technical Education (CTE) Teaching Credential. In addition,
students work with our Career Services Specialist on developing their resume and professional
These are not just auto shop classes, this program is an experience. Our hopes are to get you excited
about the automotive industry the way we are. There are so many opportunities out there, and our
goal is to open your eyes to the possibilities.
Through valued relationships with automotive industry professionals, AXC students have had access to
real world work experience and environments; a rare and life-changing opportunity for high
school students. AXC students have been able to participate in a variety of projects and car
builds, including the chance to work with automotive celebrity Chip Foose to build a 2013 Ford
F150. Every year, a few select students are privileged to attend the SEMA Show in Las Vegas. The
students also attend a wide variety of field trips from the SEMA Garage in Diamond Bar to the
Petersen Museum in Los Angeles to even the Barrett-Jackson Auction in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The AXC experience far exceeds the classroom and auto shop walls, but is about the sense of community
and passion that the automotive industry brings.
Future classes – Our plan is to continue to grow and add more classes to our
curriculum! We plan to offer: welding; fabrication; auto body; and paint.
AXC The Story
Alex Xydias & Pete Chapouris
Our namesakes, Alex Xydias & Pete Chapouris, are renowned hot rod legends and
award-winning figures in the automotive customizing industry. Alex set some of the first world
speed records and launched So-Cal Speed Shop. Pete was one of the most reputable hot rod
builders of his time, and relaunched SO-CAL Speed Shop with Alex to make it one of the most
impactful hot rod shops in the world. Their legacy will continue to influence the automotive
industry professionals of tomorrow, including AXC students at Fairplex.
Alex Xydias Bio
Forever young and filled with energy - the best possible description of the life and
times of Alex Xydias.”
Who better exemplifies the pioneer California hot rodder than the Southern California native who
caught car fever while at Fairfax High, bought his first car, a ‘29 roadster for $ 65.00,
opened the first SO-CAL Speed Shop in Burbank, and set numerous Bonneville land speed records in
his revolutionary belly-tank Lakester, all before age 26? Backing up a bit, Alex served during
W.W.II as a gunner on a B-17. Leaving the war behind, he returned to his beautifully customized
’34 cabriolet. Lots of other returning GIs were looking for something to do and Alex met
their needs and his by opening his SO-CAL Speed Shop business and running at Bonneville. The
first Lakester was built using a surplus 315 gallon auxiliary fuel tank from a P-38 Lightning, a
Model T frame, and a Vic Edelbrock V8-60 engine. That car went on to set many class speed
records...and they were off to the races!
The first Lakester was only the beginning of a series of cars bearing the SO-CAL logo; Alex and his
teammates ran the first hot rods to exceed 170, 180, and 190mph! In 1950 their Streamliner,
powered by an Edelbrock-equipped Mercury V8, ran 210mph at Bonneville, setting a new American
land speed record thus shattering the hot rod record by 50 mph! The editors of Mechanix
Illustrated Best Hot Rods stated that this So-Cal Team would ”…be known from coast
to coast as America’s No. 1 Racing Team.”
Soon drag racing took over from the dry lakes as the motorsport of choice. Alex was right there,
fielding his “Double-Threat Coupe” so labeled by Hot Rod Magazine in their May 1954
cover story. Double threat indeed…a ’34 coupe with a blown flathead running in the
1953 season at Bonneville with a class record 172.749mph backed up with a new Pomona Drag Strip
record of 132.830mph. Alex added motorsport filmmaking to his repertoire, documenting events at
Bonneville, NASCAR, Pikes Peak, 12 Hours at Sebring, Indy 500 and Drag Racing. Film making went
well; in fact one of his current projects is the transfer of his old motorsport films onto DVD.
In 1963 he accepted a position as editor of Petersen Publishing’s Car Craft Magazine. He
later became publisher of Hot Rod Industry News and then associate publisher of Hot Rod
Magazine. While there he served as director of the annual Petersen trade Show, now known as the
Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA Show), the largest automotive trade show in the
world. After leaving Petersen, Alex went on to work with partner Mickey Thompson. They organized
the SCORE off-road equipment show. As partners and friends they ran this hugely successful event
for 10 years until Mickey’s untimely death. Alex Xydias is the epitome of hard work,
creativity, teamwork, innovation, achievement, and excellence, as recognized by his following
- SEMA Hall of Fame, 1982
- Dry Lakes Hall of Fame
- Hot Rod Magazine Hall of Fame
- Route 66 Hall of Fame
- Grand National Roadsters Show Hall of Fame
- Robert E. Petersen Lifetime Achievement Award
- 2008 Wally Parks Motor Sport Museum, Chairman of the Board
Time to rest? Not if you know Alex. The Alex Xydias Center of Automotive Arts has now been founded;
it’s a career/vocational education program. As a part of The Learning Centers at Fairplex,
students learn “autoshop 101” followed by the knowledge and skills necessary to
repair, modify, and restore old cars. The future of hot rodding would seem to be in excellent
hands, with the passion of Alex Xydias serving as the inspiration for future generations.
The Founding Partners
It started with the AXC Committee and the Founding Partners. Just $ 1,000 from each
person and a dream was able to start all of this.
Margie & Robert E. Petersen Foundation Alex used to work for Robert E. Petersen
back in the day, and has kept in touch with Gigi Carlton through the years who is now the CEO of
the Margie & Robert E. Petersen Foundation. When Alex struck up a conversation with Gigi and
told her about AXC, she was intrigued, and knew it would be someone that Robert E. Petersen
would wanted to be part of. We are happy to have the support of the Petersen Foundation so that
we are able to grow and have the help of many others through the generous gifts we have
received. The “Robert E. Petersen Garage” is proudly named after a dear friend of
Alex and Gigi who are both happy to see his name placed there.
SEMA – Specialty Equipment Market Association
Not only have we been part of great projects with SEMA, they have granted our students
access to the World Famous SEMA show, and have generously donated to AXC as well. SEMA as well
as AXC Committee members, understand how important it is to expose the students to real world
events, and the marketplace.
The LA roadsters were one of the first large organizations to really help us out in
donations and collaborations.
We are grateful to the many donations we have received over the years whether they be
monetary, or other.
Urban farming is an innovative solution to increase access to fresh food while at the
same time revitalizing the economic and social health of communities. It is also nurturing a new
generation of young leaders through the operation of an urban farming enterprise. CTEC ‘s
Urban Farming course prepares students to gain expertise in cultivation, landscape design,
nursery work and urban growing, as well as sales and marketing.
Students will acquire knowledge of growing and sustaining a business through skills such as
transporting plants, propagation and landscape design. Urban Farming introduces students to the
basics of farming and helps them explore careers in agriculture and natural resources through
hands-on training at Fairplex’s five-acre diverse farm.
As the urban farming and food sustainability movements continue to grow, this class provides an
opportunity for students to enter a rapidly expanding industry. In addition to experiencing what
it takes to farm, students are introduced to concepts of leadership, horticulture, food justice,
nutrition and community organizing. Urban Farming offers students the opportunity to learn about
the farm-to-table movement through cooperative learning with CTEC’s Culinary Arts class
and on-site businesses such as Sheraton Hotel & Conference Center and McKinley’s
Students will be prepared to work in a full service landscape company, nursery, gardening shop or for
further study in a college that offers agriculture or horticulture as a major.
Hospitality Foods/ Restaurant Management
The hospitality industry is enormous and provides an array of rewarding positions in
restaurants, lodging, event planning, theme parks, resorts, cruise lines and more. Students will
learn to understand the basic functions, objectives, and operation skills that are common to the
hospitality industry. CTEC’s Hospitality program prepares students with competencies in
the areas of sales and marketing, customer service, facilities maintenance and housekeeping.
Students will look at the customer service/hospitality industry from many perspectives.
Classroom and hands-on experiences in this class will include sales and marketing, exploration
of all-around hotel services and positions, and event organizing and planning. Course work
focuses on the concepts of customer service/relations and its importance to the success of
organizations and an in-depth study of general hotel/hospitality/service industry and positions.
This course may include a hands-on internship at events or facilities at Fairplex.
Food services continue to be one of the fastest growing and most competitive industries
in the United States and worldwide. The Culinary 1 class provides students with the basic skills
required for entry-level work in professional restaurant service and operations.
Components of this class include the history of the food service industry, safety, proper service
styles, sanitation and food handling, cooking and nutrition terminology, working with knives and
equipment, chopping, and basic kitchen and food preparation techniques. Students learn the
entire spectrum of the food industry including planning, preparation and presentation throughout
the semester course.
Students enjoy collaborative efforts with students in CTEC’s Urban Farming program, observing
the operations of CTEC’s onsite farm to further gain knowledge of the farm-to-table
journey. Students receive training for food services’ positions that are available in the
hospitality, business and healthcare sectors of the economy. Upon successful completion of the
program, students can find entry-level jobs in businesses as varied as hotels, restaurants,
bakeries, corporations, hospitals, airlines, assisted living facilities and cruise ships. The
class culminates with the opportunity to complete and receive a food handler certification.
Students in Culinary 2 class build on their experience in Culinary 1 to further realize
career goals. Components of this class include safety, menu planning and marketing, and various
food preparation including baked goods and desserts. Students may also have the opportunity to
complete an internship or a job shadowing experience during this course.
*Must have successfully completed Culinary 1
*Introduction to Welding Industry: Coming soon.
Skilled and certified welding workers are in high demand in the Automotive, Manufacturing
Industry, construction trade, and utilities industries, aero-space, and many other industries.
Starting salaries can be $40,000.to 60,000 for beginning skilled workers. American Welding
Classes will be offered for high school students. Applicants will apply through the website or in
person. Scholarships for high school students are offered from the Keith & Saralee Baldwin
Welding Scholarship Fund. The adult fee-based courses will be 6 week sessions, with students
earning an AWS (American Welding Society) Certificate at the end of 6 months
Students will learn basic welding principles such as, materials joining, the materials of
welding, techniques of welding, such as MIG (Gas Metal Arc) Welding, and TIG (Gas Tungsten Arc)
Welding, and preparation for the basic American Welding Society (AWS) Certification. High school
students will also learn career readiness skills.
- 101 & 102 - Introduction to welding Industry: including careers
options, career readiness, OSHA safety regulations, basic materials & tool
introduction, metals & materials, beginning metal joining, industry vocabulary &
symbols. Simple beginning project based work.
- 103 & 104 - Advanced welding: focus is on welding skill development,
introduction to various types of welding. Introduction to basic reading of blueprints,
math & science of welding, and preparation for certification. Project based learning
will be included at this level.
Welding lab equipment made possibe through a generous grant from the Margie and Robert E.