Magazine article Techniques

Members Making a Difference: ACTE's Educators in Action

Magazine article Techniques

Members Making a Difference: ACTE's Educators in Action

Article excerpt

ASA MEMBER OF THE CAREER AND TECHNICAL EDUCATION (CTE) community, you're aware of the collective impact educators make on the field and on legislative affairs when they band together within professional organizations like the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE). But you may not realize the power individual members themselves have to help define and realize ACTE's role as a leader for change. From setting direction on the board of directors to implementing ACTE's goals on the ground, member volunteers are ensuring that the Associations priorities move forward and that they continue to reflect the needs of educators in the field. Hundreds of members have chosen to become part of the movement for progress by joining ACTE's Educators in Action, a volunteer initiative that taps into the skills, perspectives and outreach efforts of members to make a difference. By responding to calls for action, collaborating with fellow volunteers and proactively seeking out ways to improve association activities, Educators in Action are proving that ACTE's strength lies in the dedication and involvement of its members.

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This past year has been a breakthrough year for the group. They have successfully underwritten a slew of new and improved initiatives. Advisory group members helped ACTE tackle challenging concepts, such as how to mobilize volunteers behind nationwide grassroots awareness and recruitment campaigns. Content experts collaborated with division leaders on the board of directors to help plot professional development offerings for ACTE's CareerTech VISION 2016. Educators in Action were invited to provide their input on ACTE's High-quality CTE Initiative, as well as the development of a global competencies toolkit. Volunteer writers contributed their voices to the Educators in Action blog, which reached its highest level of readership in 2016. Local supporters amplified the nationwide CTE Month[R] celebration by showcasing the benefits of CTE in their schools and districts.

The number of volunteers joining the ranks is on the rise, and with it so is ACTE's potential to accomplish more.

Who are these members who make up Educators in Action? They are volunteers from across the country and across content areas. Not all of ACTE's volunteers are experts, and not all of them have leadership experience, but all of them share a common passion for CTE and a belief in their own capacity to effect change. In this article we turn to a few dedicated volunteers to share what motivated them to get involved.

What inspires you to volunteer?

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My family history is fundamentally a legacy of opportunity provided by CTE and championed by ACTE. In 1936, my father graduated with honors from McKee High School in Staten Island, which is now a CTE high school. Educational opportunities and careers have changed since then, but the school's mission to provide applied learning has remained constant. With this evolution of CTE through the 20th century, my family thrived and lived the American dream. The paradigm has shifted from vocational training for a job to the attainment of multiple skill sets and academic proficiency in preparation for a career pathway. In the current CTE classroom, future generations of workers will be able to pursue many opportunities over a lifetime as the globalized economy changes. …

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