CAREER TECHNICAL
EDUCATORS OF IDAHO

Serving Career Technical Educators by promoting opportunities for continual personal and professional growth. 

CTEI 2020 TEACHING AWARD WINNERS

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New Teacher of the Year
Shelby McRae: COSSA Regional Technology and Education Center

Shelby is the Commercial Welding instructor at the COSSA Regional Technology and Education Center (CRTEC). Shelby came straight from industry into teaching, but she has quickly made herself an indispensable team member at CRTEC, taking on the role of National Technical Honor Society (NTHS) advisor, SkillsUSA advisor, and CTSO contest data manager. Shelby has a lot of success with her students, achieving 100% positive placement with her concentrators, and placing several into Internships with industry partners in their senior year. Several of her students have earned AWS industry certification, including some at the 3G unlimited level.  CTEI is proud to honor Ms. Shelby McRae with the New Teacher of the Year award.

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Secondary Teacher of the Year
Joseph Wax: Renaissance High School

Joe is the pre-engineering instructor at Renaissance High School, in the West Ada school district. Joe works hard to facilitate rich extensions to his curriculum such as the opportunity for his Aerospace classes to travel to Gowen Field where they were not only able to watch how the flight simulators in action, but got to participate as well. Joe is the co-advisor for Renaissance High School Technology Student Association (TSA) Chapter. This spring at the Idaho TSA State Leadership conference, RHS won Top Chapter, had two students installed as state officers, and earned 14 medals. The RHS chapter has increased membership annually and is a model for a CTSO, providing rich extensions to the CTE curriculum while at the same time offering an enjoyable social experience for students. Joe has served as President of the Idaho TSA board for the past 5 years. CTEI is proud to honor Mr. Joe Wax with the Secondary Teacher of the Year award.

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Teacher Educator of the Year
Dr. John Cannon: University of Idaho

Dr. John Cannon is the University of Idaho facilitator for the Idaho Division of CTE’s InSpIRE to Educate program for new CTE teachers. InSpIRE seeks to train industry experts in an alternative way as these educators accept teaching positions in their content expertise at the secondary and post-secondary levels. To date, the InSpIRE Cohort in its original form has added 140 CTE instructors to the field and will add another 37 at the end of this coming school year. Data also shows that occupational specialist instructors going through InSpIRE are being retained at an 83 percent plus rate because of the networking and mentoring components of the program. A few InSpIRE participants have gone on to complete a degree program at the University of Idaho, as Dr. Cannon identified and implemented a way for InSpIRE participants to receive credit for prior learning. CTEI is proud to honor Dr. John Cannon with the Teacher Educator of the Year Award.

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Post Secondary Teacher of the Year
Ben Hamlett: College of Southern Idaho

Ben is the Automation Engineering instructor at the College of Southern Idaho and he is not a typical instructor. He recently moved most of his classes from the classroom to the laboratory. He redesigned the laboratory so that he could both teach and allow the students access to hands-on-activities. Ben gives tours of the lab to any students or student groups who are interested. He also provides hands on activities for those tours. He frequently takes his robots and 3D printers to schools for career days to discuss careers in manufacturing. In that last few months he has had students in the lab who were part of the Technology Student Association, local K-12, home school groups, Hispanic Youth Leadership Summit, students who are part of STEM groups, students from Boy Scouts group, etc. Local facilities donate equipment to the program. One local processor has donated $250,000 worth of equipment. This ensures that students have access to the exact same kind of equipment that they will have in the workplace. Ben teaches coursework in multiple degree pathways within the college, including: Manufacturing, Engineering and Food Processing, and Automation Engineering. Ben is also part of the first Technical Bachelors offered at a Community College in Idaho. He teaches some of the maintenance and automation course in the program. CTEI is proud to honor Mr. Ben Hamlett with the Post-Secondary Teacher of the Year award.

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Administrator of the Year
Colby Mattila: Kootenai Technical Education Center

I was born and raised in Emmett, Idaho where I graduated from high school in 1988. I then attended the University of Idaho and received a Bachelor of Science in Business Education in 1993 and started teaching Business Education at Meridian High School. I taught at Meridian High School for 2 years and then relocated to Hagerman High School and taught Business Education for 4 years. During my teaching career in the Hagerman School District I completed a Master’s in Educational Administration. I then returned to the West Ada School District (formerly known as Meridian) to start my career in administration. Since 1999, I have been an Assistant Principal for 10 years and then an administrator at the district level. My current title is the Director of Career-Technical Education for the district. I will be starting my 10th year overseeing this program which is the largest in the state of Idaho. My husband, Nathan, is an Agriculture instructor and we have a 12-year-old son.

A couple of “best practices” that I believe are essential to any successful CTE classroom is setting the tone of the classroom from day one. Let the students know how excited you are for them to be in your classroom and what kind of opportunities the CTE pathway will create for them. “Engage and Inspire!”

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Career Guidance Award
Abigail Jerome: College of Southern Idaho

Abby is a person who is willing to jump in to do whatever needs to be done.  She has expansive knowledge of career and college guidance and is determined to see others succeed. As an Early College Coordinator, she is a leader in promoting CTE programs to high school students interested in advancing their opportunities in the medical field. Her approachable manner invites students and colleagues alike to trust and connect with her. As part of the Career Guidance REACH Planning Committee, she provides insightful feedback and promoted topic ideas, which are current and relevant to all career guidance professionals, not just in her area of interest. Abigale is passionate, driven, capable, focused and student centric. She regularly provides detailed support, training and leadership support for Early College team, and our partners, which allows us to make positive and impactful decisions for our constituents. CTEI is proud to honor Ms. Abigail Jerome with the Career Guidance Award.

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