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iTeachU: Building Upon National and State CTE Teacher Recruitment Efforts

For more than two decades we have heard alarms, warning of the shortage of secondary teachers in content areas such as agriculture education and family and consumer sciences… In response, national initiatives emerged to address the need to recruit teachers into these career and technical education (CTE) fields. The National Association of Agricultural Educators (NAAE) (2018) began the Tagged to Teach Ag initiative in 2009 and turned a spotlight on the need to recruit and retain professionals in that space.

A Kansas-based campaign coined “Say Yes to FCS” was adopted in 2014 by the National Association of State Administrators of Family and Consumer Sciences (NASAFACS) (Randel & Spavone, 2016). The American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (AAFCS) hosts online resources to fill the FCS teacher pipeline. These campaigns and others have heightened an awareness of the need for teachers in these fields of CTE.

Statewide CTE Teacher Recruitment Efforts

Capitalizing on the buzz created by the national Tagged to Teach Ag and Say Yes to FCS campaigns, statewide recruitment efforts are underway to recruit the next generation of CTE teachers in South Dakota.

Each year, South Dakota FFA members who plan to attend South Dakota State University (SDSU) to major in agricultural education are invited to participate in the event, which mirrors an athletic signing. The student, their agriculture teacher and SDSU faculty sit at a table and sign a framed letter of intent to teach agriculture.

South Dakota has undertaken additional statewide efforts to recruit family and consumer sciences teachers… In addition to the traditional means of recruiting, SDSU implemented iTeachU in 2011. The one-day, annual event on campus is a joint effort between the agricultural education and FCSE faculty in the department of teaching, learning and leadership, and introduces participants to a career in teaching while simultaneously providing a glimpse into college life.

Associated faculty take on the logistical roles of organizing and planning the iTeachU program, while current SDSU students facilitate the event. This joint effort between faculty and students with diverse interests is purposeful. At SDSU, several of the core education courses are cross-listed between these disciplines, and many students, pursuing degrees to become agriculture and/or FCS teachers, will attend classes taught by both faculty throughout their time as students. These shared classroom experiences help students recognize the CTE connection that agriculture and FCS share.

ACTE members can read the full article, “iTeachU: Building Upon National and State CTE Teacher Recruitment Efforts,” in the November/December issue of Techniques today. Watch your mailboxes for the print edition to appear this week!

Not a member? Join! ACTE is the largest national education association dedicated to the advancement of education that prepares youth and adults for successful careers.

ACTE Student Trophy Design Contest Winners Set Standard for Excellence

ACTE is committed to providing career and technical education (CTE) students with opportunities to develop the skills they’ll need for success in a global economy. One such opportunity, the Student Trophy Design Contest, encourages secondary, postsecondary and adult CTE students in 3D design or CAD courses to develop and submit a trophy design that reflects the prestige of ACTE’s Excellence Awards program. Designs are then judged by ACTE staff and Stratasys Ltd. — a manufacturer of 3D printers and production systems — on visual appeal, function and structural integrity.

“Stratasys is pleased to partner with ACTE to create this contest for the students. It is clear that the educators are doing an outstanding job immersing the students in additive manufacturing and computer-aided drafting,” said Jesse Roitenberg, national education manager for Stratasys. “The trophy entries we have judged over the past three years are phenomenally designed and could not be created by any other manufacturing process.”

We are proud to announce that the winners of the 2018 ACTE Student Trophy Design Contest are Rashi Kejriwal and Shreya Santhanagopalan, of Ellicott City, Maryland, supported by their teacher, David Lucania.

The winners will receive a $1,000 scholarship prize, a one-year lease of a 3D printer (courtesy of Stratasys) and materials, and a trip to ACTE’s CareerTech VISION 2018 in San Antonio, Texas, where they will be recognized at the Awards Banquet. And here, an exclusive interview.

The Mount Hebron High School juniors, Kejriwal and Santhanagopalan, sat down with Techniques to discuss their interests in STEM now and in the future, and how they were inspired to enter — and ultimately win — the 2018 ACTE Student Trophy Design Contest.

Talk a little about yourself and your background, your school, your experience with CTE, and your plans for the future.

Rashi Kejriwal: I’m a junior in Howard County, Maryland, at Mount Hebron High School and I’m enrolled in the Project Lead the Way (PLTW) engineering classes at our school. Personally, apart from PLTW, I have always had a background in STEM. For example, I completed an assignment in elementary school in which students were tasked to design and build a city… Through these and other activities I have developed a strong interest toward multiple fields in engineering. In the future I want to pursue a career in which I can learn and contribute to society.

Shreya Santhanagopalan: I am also a junior at Howard County, Maryland’s Mount Hebron High School. From a young age, I was brought up to love engineering tasks and figuring out solutions to difficult problems. I began to learn to code when I was in fifth grade; in middle school I learned to create multiple apps with guidance. I am still exploring options for my future but I take great interest in computer science and engineering, and I plan to attend college until I receive a Master’s degree in my chosen field.

How and why did you decide to enter the ACTE Student Trophy Design Contest? What inspired your winning design?

Shreya Santhanagopalan: Rashi and I were intrigued when our teacher, Mr. Lucania, brought up the ACTE Student Trophy Design Contest in our shared Project Lead the Way class. After weeks of planning, in and outside of school, we had developed seven different design sketches…

Rashi Kejriwal: We combined the top portion of one remaining design with the bottom portion of the other to create our final design.

What guidance did your career and technical education teacher provide?

Rashi Kejriwal: When it came time to build the trophy, Mr. Lucania’s mentoring, along with the use of AutoDesk Inventor and its unique features, helped us turn our dreams into reality.

The trophy designed by Kejriwal and Santhanagopalan will be presented to ACTE’s national award winners at the Awards Banquet on Wednesday, Nov. 28. Check out the full list of finalists and make your plans to celebrate CTE on the first night of ACTE’s CareerTech VISION 2018, Nov. 28–Dec. 1, in San Antonio, Texas.

ACTE members can read the full interview, “ACTE Student Trophy Design Contest Winners Set Standard for Excellence,” in the October issue of Techniques today. Not a member? Join! ACTE is the largest national education association dedicated to the advancement of education that prepares youth and adults for successful careers.

PAGES will feature excerpts from articles published in Techniques and wholly original content.

Launching PAGES, a Techniques blog

Hello, world! Welcome to PAGES, a Techniques blog.

Since joining the staff of ACTE in 2017, I have worked for this day. We’re live! PAGES will feature excerpts from articles in print and wholly original content (interviews, case studies, news items and more) based on the theme of each new issue. We’ll talk about topics trending in career and technical education (CTE). And we’ll highlight stories of educators and programs doing the work to ensure our students graduate college- and career-ready.

From PAGES it is my hope you will find increased value in Techniques online, expanded opportunities for engagement and even more stories of CTE success. Written for career and technical educators by career and technical educators, Techniques addresses the issues ACTE members care about most, providing input you can trust when making decisions for your classrooms, programs and school systems — in print and on the web.

Are you interested in writing for PAGES?

Let’s collaborate! View the 2018–19 Editorial Calendar and reach out via email to discuss your ideas. At conferences, in conversation with students and on the Expo floor at VISION, think of Techniques (and PAGES) often. Bring me your stories, because they are the stories that matter to CTE educators like you.

Check back next week for a preview of our celebration in San Antonio: ACTE’s CareerTech VISION 2018.