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ACTE Announces Utah Digital Media Instructor as National Award Finalist


September 12, 2016

Contact: Jarrod Nagurka 
jnagurka@acteonline.org, 703-683-9312 

ACTE Announces Utah Digital Media Instructor as National Award Finalist

ALEXANDRIA, VA—The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) announces Wendy Frazier-Snyder, a digital media instructor at American Fork High School in American Fork, Utah, as the 2016 Region V Teacher of the Year. This award recognizes the finest career and technical teachers at the middle/secondary school level who have demonstrated innovation in the classroom, commitment to their students and dedication to the improvement of CTE in their institutions and communities. The Teacher of the Year Award is sponsored by Express Employment Professionals.

Wendy Frazier-Snyder leads a student-directed and project-based curriculum in her digital media classes at American Fork High School (AFHS). As part of a 6-week challenge, her students are the writers, directors and producers of their own video pieces, which are ultimately shown at an organized public screening. Through this self-directed project, students pick up technology skills while acquiring core knowledge and building workplace skills such as collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking. In a similar ‘surrealism’ project, students in Frazier-Snyder’s digital photography lab use photographs to tell a visual story around an abstract central theme such as ‘human rights’ or ‘empowerment.’ The project integrates art, writing, and business/communication skills, culminating in a final phase when students pitch their work and curate their projects at a student showcase through Adobe Youth Voices. Through workshops and competitions such as Microsoft’s DigiGirlz, Utah State STEMFEST, SkillsUSA and other events, Frazier-Snyder’s students are constantly exposed to challenging and rewarding opportunities to share their work and network with global community partners.

Frazier-Snyder launched a Skilled and Technical Science: University (STS:U) at the annual Utah ACTE conference and is currently working on designing and directing the development of a new digital media academy at American Fork High School (AFHS). She has won multiple awards for her teaching innovation and industry work and is a member of several professional organizations, serving in many leadership positions including on the board of directors for Utah ACTE. Every year she participates in a summer training with her peers and most recently has been part of the organizing team; she has coordinated successful, popular and unique workshops and seminars on her areas of expertise. “I believe Wendy Frazier-Snyder to be highly qualified as a teacher,” says colleague Thomas B. Szalay, Fine Arts & CTE teacher at West High School. “Her passion for learning is self-evident.”

Frazier-Snyder is one of five finalists for the 2017 national title. The national winner will be announced at the ACTE Awards Banquet, a dinner and award presentation recognizing the best CTE educators in the country. The event will take place on Wednesday evening, November 30, during ACTE’s CareerTech VISION 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Awards Banquet is sponsored by Express Employment Professionals, the US Army, CareerSafe, Certiport, Stratasys, and International Baccalaureate. For more information about the ACTE Excellence Awards, visit our webpage.  


About ACTE 
The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) is the nation’s largest not-for-profit association committed to the advancement of education that prepares youth and adults for successful careers. ACTE represents the community of CTE professionals, including educators, administrators, researchers, guidance counselors and others at all levels of education. ACTE is committed to excellence in providing advocacy, public awareness and access to resources, professional development and leadership opportunities. 


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