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ACTE Announces Kansas Agriculture Education Instructor as National Award Finalist


September 25, 2017 

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

ACTE Announces Kansas Agriculture Education Instructor as National Award Finalist

ALEXANDRIA, VA—Today, the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) announced Kelly Hoelting, Agriculture Education Instructor of Mission Valley USD #330 in Eskridge, Kansas, as the recipient of the 2017 ACTE Region V Carl Perkins Community Service Award. This award recognizes individuals who have used CTE to make a significant impact on their community and demonstrated leadership in programs and activities that promote student involvement in community service. 

“Kelly Hoelting is an advocate for calculated, progressive change,” says Dustin Kuntz, Vice-President of Harveyville Seed Co. and Mayor of Harveyville. In Hoelting’s 15 years as an instructor at Mission Valley High School in Eskridge, Kansas, she has ushered the agricultural education program through several transitions to maintain the program’s legacy of success. Under Hoelting’s leadership, the program tripled enrollment in a 10-year period, which justified the hiring of a second agriculture instructor in 2014 and further expanded the number of CTE offerings available at the school. Hoelting’s FFA chapter has grown and is the largest student organization at Mission Valley with 97 students (representing 60% of total enrollment). Community service is a major focus of the agricultural education program and FFA chapter. In 2016, Hoelting’s FFA members volunteered over 500 hours of community service and added two new major service projects with the Community Thanksgiving Meal and Community-Wide clean-up. Other highlights of the FFA chapter’s service work include a Community Blood Drive, Family Trap Shoots, Alternative Day Food & Wildlife Presentations, and Hunter Safety Education.

Through the Kansas Association of Agricultural Educators, Hoelting has taken an active role as a mentor for new teachers, and her program is regularly observed by students from Kansas State University as part of Mission Valley’s standing as a professional development school for teachers in training. Hoelting’s reputation as a leader extends outside Kansas: she was invited to serve on the National cPass Comprehensive Agriculture Exam development team where she helped write national agricultural education standards. Hoelting has also made giving back to the community a major aspect of her tenure at Mission Valley. Her personal contributions have included starting a local FFA alumni group, pursuing grants to build a community garden and local wildlife food plots, and working to bring a nature trail to the school. Recently, Hoelting organized an auction to raise over $4,000 in scholarships for seniors in the agricultural education program.

Hoelting is one of five finalists for the 2018 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, December 6, during ACTE’s CareerTech VISION 2017 in Nashville, Tennessee. The Awards Banquet is sponsored by Express Employment Professionals, the US Army, CareerSafe, 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, school counselors, guidance and career development professionals 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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