About the Academy for Construction & Design at Cardozo Senior High SchoolACAD StaffFAQsEnroll/ApplyNews & EventsContact Us  


The Academy of Construction and Design combines academic and technical studies to prepare students for high demand jobs and careers. View our Career Map for work- and college-bound students.

Students learn about architecture and design, carpentry, electrical, heating/ventilation/air conditioning (HVAC), renewable energy, sustainable building, and other specialties. Technical studies include:

  • math
  • science
  • blueprint reading
  • physics
  • mechanical drawing
  • computer applications

Academy graduates gain knowledge, skills, credentials, and a solid preparation for apprentice employment or college degree programs leading to careers as:

  • Construction Managers
  • Architects
  • Electrical Engineers
  • Mechanical Engineers
  • Structural Engineers
  • Environmental Engineers
  • Civil Engineers
  • Interior Designers
  • Landscape Architects
  • Industry Entrepreneurs




For Students: Prepare now for a brighter future. It will soon be time to think about what you want to do after high school. The Academy can help you find out about careers you want to explore and how to get there.

For Parents: The Academy of Construction and Design encourages students to stay in school and graduate with knowledge and skills that are in demand. The Academy offers STEM-focused classes in a supportive learning environment to maximize every student’s learning potential. The Academy works closely with employers to give students well-rounded learning experiences inside and outside the classroom, including internships, field training, mentoring, and networking for career success.

For Employers and Training Partners: The Academy of Construction and Design answers an urgent need for work-ready trainees and instruction to develop the next generation of industry professionals. In the Academy, students gain critical knowledge from career-focused curriculum, real life design/build projects, and an innovative life skills training program that emphasizes writing, interviewing, and communication skills to help students succeed in school and on the job.

The Academy has actively engaged in training partnerships with industry organizations, including ABC National, D.C. Habitat for Humanity, ACE Mentors Program, Architects in Schools, Blue Skye Construction, and more.


Why Choose Career and Technical Education?

National research reveals significant benefits for CTE students. At a time when rising costs threaten to put college out of reach for many students, CTE pathways provide good jobs that can pay the way to further education, says a study released by Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce. Also, CTE students reportedly are more likely to develop skills such as problem solving, math, communication, employability skills and critical thinking during high school than their school mates who do not participate in CTE. These are the most in-demand skills in today’s workforce, according to the Society for Human Resource Management.


Academy Curriculum

NCCER Curriculum, a nationally accredited construction training program, provides the basis for learning and assessment in the Academy of Construction and Design.

Foundation Course – Building and Construction Overview
An introductory course designed to give students hands-on experience and information about career paths in the construction industry with emphasis on carpentry, electrical, HVAC, and plumbing.

Students specialize in a technical pathway of their choice in a 2.5 year program with 5.5 semester credits in coursework and an internship. Students who complete the Pathways curriculum earn credentials that are recognized by the Associated Builders and Contractors apprenticeship program for the State of Maryland and the DC Apprenticeship Academy’s registered apprenticeship program for the District of Columbia. NCCER provides transcripts and documentation of students’ training accomplishments through its National Registry.

Academic Foundation Certificate (AFC)
Students receive credentials from the nationally accredited NCCER and their National Registry. Students receive transcripts, wallet cards and certificates that can be verified by current or future employers. These credentials open doors to employment, on-the-job training, and higher education for graduates.

Main Page
D.C. Students Foundation
Academy of Construction & Design at Cardozo Senior High
Apprenticeship Academy

For info and enrollment:
Shelly Karriem, Director
202.422.3993 phone


Annual Meet the Future scholarship and awards luncheon

Build a House – Build a Future
Academy students build a micro house

View our Alumni Survey