ACTE Fellowship Mentor Interview

It was befitting that the opportunity arose to interview Ms. Jayme Fitzpatrick prior to attending the upcoming National Policy Seminar in March. Ms. Fitzpatrick currently serves as CTE Manager for Career &Technical Education in the Deer Valley Unified School District in Phoenix, Arizona. A fun fact to note is that prior to the beginning of daylight savings time, she is two hours behind the east coast. After daylight time begins on March 13, she will be three hours behind east coast time.

In speaking with Ms. Fitzpatrick, I learned that she this marks her 19th in CTE. Prior to her current position, she taught Business and Marketing for 10 years.  She oversees CTE programs for five high schools with some 10,000 CTE students and 21 programs. In 2019, Ms. Fitzpatrick was an ACTE Fellow.

I took this opportunity to pose the following questions: How did her fellowship experience help her in her current position? How has this experience helped you grow as a leader? What has been her biggest reward or frustration from her fellowship experience?

Ms. Fitzpatrick credits her current position in part to serving as an ACTE. Being an ACTE fellow inspired her to attend more conferences. She has been able to build her professional network and put her name in the hat to serve. She has made many people connections as well as resources.

Ms. Fitzpatrick’s noted that she has grown in her knowledge of CTE. She jelled well with her cohort and has maintained many connections with them. She knows more about why she should serve and ways in which she can serve. fellowship experience.

Ms. Fitzpatrick reiterated her the many opportunities to network as a big reward. She can call on others that were in her cohort if she needs assistance because she has maintained those connections. She stated that the biggest frustration was writing articles for Education in Action and never seeing them published.

Unfortunately, Ms. Fitzpatrick will not be able to attend ACTE’s National Policy Seminar (NPS) this year. However, she added some final thoughts that would benefit me during this experience and especially at NPS. First, take the time to enjoy the fellowship year. Use the on the hill to make connections with representatives. Try to carve out time each week to devote to the completing assignments. Have business cards available to distribute at NPS and visit the ACTE building.

We plan to connect again once NPS is over. I am looking forward to growing in my leadership in Career and Technical Education and hope that my experience and the connects I make are just as rewarding as those shared with me by Ms. Fitzpatrick.



Karen Roberts

RII Experienced Fellow