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Join CTE at the 2015 Utah STEM Fest

March 24th, 2015

Middle/junior high school students, and their families, are invited to attend the 2015 Utah STEM Fest March 25-27, 2015 at Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah.

Utah STEM Fest is an innovative workforce development tool designed to provide students with hands-on exposure to diverse and exciting careers. Through interactive exhibits students will learn about careers, Milford_TE_IMG_4459discover the technical skills required to be successful in a career, and find out how to train for jobs in some of Utah’s fastest growing industries, including:
> Aerospace
> Automotive and Diesel
> Construction
> Energy and Energy Efficiency
> Engineering
> Manufacturing and Composites

STEM Fest mapSTEM Fest is about innovation and how to harness it. It’s about imagination and how to fuel it. Students and their families will have the opportunity to participate in hands-on experiences in science and technology. Be sure to stop by the USOE/Career and Technical Education booth located at C15 in the exhibition center.

Who: Utah middle/junior high school students

What You Can Expect to See at Utah STEM Fest:
> BYU’s soft-robot and unmanned aerial vehicle
> Discovery Space Center
> Larry H. Miller race car
> Superhydrophobic material
> Supermileage vehicle

> Wednesday, March 25, Thursday, March 26, and Friday morning, March 27: Open to middle/junior high school students.
> Friday, March 27: Open to the public from 2:00-8:00 p.m.

Where: UCCU Events Center on Utah Valley University Campus 800 West University Parkway, Orem, UT

Why: To learn about future career opportunities that align with STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) disciplines.

Questions: Contact Carl Lyman – carl.lyman@schools.utah.gov

STEM Career Resources:
STEM Career—Learn about STEM careers and available scholarships.
STEM Girls—Find out about the career opportunities for women in STEM.
O*NET—Explore STEM careers by discipline.

National Ag Week Omelet Cook-off

March 20th, 2015

IMG_0203In celebration of the first day of spring, and to celebrate National Ag Week, Utah FFA hosted an omelet cook-off at the Utah State Fair Park. Teams competed to cook the best tasting and most creative omelet in 15 minutes. The competition was “egg-citing” to watch as each competitor “scrambled” to create an omelet that would impress the judges.

Four distinguished guests—Christina Nolasco, former State FFA President; Randy Rigby, President, Utah Jazz; LuAnn Adams, Commissioner, Utah Department of Agriculture and Food; and Governor Gary Herbert—were deemed “egg-cellent” judges for the event. Judges
“egg-amined” each omelet for appearance and taste to crown an “egg-ceptional” winner in two categories.

Haley Smith, KSL TV, won “Most Creative” omelet and an Oakdell Eggs representative won “Best Tasting” omelet. Both individuals were “egg-static” to be named the winner of the 2015 Omelet Cook-off.

Related Story:
KSL Morning Show – National Ag Day Omelet Cook-off

Update: FIRST Robotics Competition

March 19th, 2015

FIRST 2014-1Congratulations to Annie Yun and Jacob Fishman who qualified to advance to the 2015 National FIRST Robotics Championship in St. Louis, MO on April 22-25, 2015. The FIRST Championship is the culmination of the season’s FIRST programs, bringing together robotics competitions for the ultimate Sport for the Mind™. Teams will compete for scholarships ranging from a one-time award of $500 to full four-year tuition.

FIRST Dean’s List Finalist Award
Annie Yun

Team 3006 – Red Rock Robotics – Salt Lake City, UT
Jacob Fishman
Team 3245 – The Ravens – Sandy, UT

Team 3239—Birds of Prey of Layton, Utah received the Industrial Safety Award. Although the team will not be advancing to national competition, the award they received celebrates their progress in the competition, beyond safety fundamentals, by using innovative ways to eliminate or protect against hazards. Congratulations!

Related Stories:
High School Students Compete in Regional Robotics Competition in Salt Lake City
Robots and Their Child Overlords Invade Utah for a Day
Robotics Competition Inspires Future Engineers
Teams Compete to See Who Can Build the Fastest Robot

Emotional Range of Motion: The Other Side of Physical Therapy

March 17th, 2015

By Blake Jordan, student at Sky View High School

Blake Jordan photo 2“One more, come on one more! Get there, get there, get there! You can do this!” The physical therapist screams at his rehabilitating patient. The final rep is completed, and thus proves the patient’s physical state has been tested and proved to be improving greatly. The patient feels great physically, and hasn’t been able to work his muscles this hard since the accident, and knows he can get back to performing the usual tasks that he was debilitated from. However, he has an extremely difficult time getting any rest in the evening. Every night he wakes up around 3:30 in the morning, screaming, and cold sweat streams from his pores. His mind replays the final stages before the accident. The desperate honking, the headlights launching towards him—at an incredibly high speed—and the closing of his eyes with no idea of what is to come next.

How absolutely horrifying would this situation be if it were you? You can recover physically, that part is the easy part compared to the long rocky road of the mental recovery. Our brains have the tendency to tie an emotionally challenging event to a certain sight or smell that is chemically tied to that specific event. This is why some smells bring back good memories, or bad memories. Or, what if you see something that reminds you of a hard time suffered years ago, it still flashes in your mind as if it was just happening again. Often physical therapists tend to stay strictly to their title, physical therapy. However, Sharik Peck is very unique, because he almost mainly concentrates on the mental side of recovery. I’ve witnessed Sharik practically blur out a bad memory by mixing chemical releases in the brain at the same time, causing the memory to not be as severe and to help the emotional state of the patient. This experience has completely changed the way I look at the study of medicine and the medical professional field.

Blake Jordan photo 3I aspire to be a doctor one day, and have taken major strides as a young 17 year old to get there. This will help me to be a more personable doctor. Granted, I’m not planning on going into physical therapy, but the lessons remain the same. All doctors should care about every single one of their patients and help them in a way that is unique to that doctor. This will create an amazing bond between doctor and patient and both will be much more relaxed and comfortable in that environment.

As I head to college, I will have already developed valuable skills in the medical field that most will not be able to say they did. I work at a doctor’s office, working on data entry and billing insurance companies to make sure revenue is generated for the clinic. That is the insurance and billing side of healthcare. I’m also interning for Sharik and seeing the one-on-one actual doctor patient experience of healthcare. I want to express my sincere gratitude to Sharik, and his wife/business partner Cheryl Peck, for granting this amazing opportunity to me and for helping me develop valuable skills in the healthcare world. I’m Blake Jordan. In the winter of 2015, I completed a CTE Internship at Maximum Function Physical Therapy in the field of physical therapy.

Call for Entries: 2015 Utah Digital Media Arts Festival

March 16th, 2015

GTI_IT_IMG_1732The entry deadline for submitting entries for the 2015 Utah Digital Media Arts Festival is Friday, April 10, 2015 at midnight. The Utah Digital Media Arts Festival is a yearly competition/festival that gives Utah high school students the opportunity to showcase his or her best work, and for students to see projects from all around the state.


1. What should my entry be about? There is no theme or content requirement for the categories. As long as it is school appropriate, you can create whatever you want!

2. How many entries can I submit in each category? Utah schools can submit four entries in each category, regardless of class size. Individual Utah students can submit two different categories. Schools are invited to hold their own competitions to pick entries that will move on to the festival.

3. Can students use photos they have found online in their designs? For the T-Shirt/Poster, and Graphics, and Photography categories, the work must be 100 percent student original.

4. Can copyright music be used in video and animation submissions? If copyright music is used in the video and animation categories, students must receive written permission from the original artist. This permission must be submitted along with the entry.

5. Can Creative Commons music be used in video and animation submissions? Creative Commons music can be used if the artist, song, and URL where found are attributed in the credits. Students will also need to attribute on the entry form.

DMAF T-shirt and poster winner 2015Category Guidelines: How to submit vector graphics, raster graphics, photography, animation—stop-motion, 2D animation—traditional or digital, audio, video, 3D graphics, 3D animation, Web design, and game design.

Entry form: Contact the Digital Media Arts teacher at your school.

Entry submission deadline: Friday, April 10, 2015 at midnight.

Fee: There is no fee to submit entries. However, there is a $12 fee to attend the 2015 Utah Digital Media Arts Festival, which will be held May 5, 2015 at Utah Valley University.

Prizes: First place winners receive a one-year subscription to the Adobe Creative cloud, along with a plaque, gift card, and a certificate.

News: Follow Utah Digital Media Arts Festival on Facebook.

Congratulations to Paul Amstone, student at Layton High School, who won the 2015 Utah Digital Media Arts Festival T-shirt and poster contest.

Stacie Chatterton: Future Police Officer

March 11th, 2015

Female Officer, Is it Possible?
By Stacie Chatterton, student at Sky View High School

Stacie Chatterton photo 1There is a point in every kid’s life where they dream big. Everyone wants to be the person that everyone looks up to. It could differ between a firefighter, astronaut, doctor, or even a police officer. The more they grow up the more options they know they have and choose to become something else. For me, becoming a police officer is only the beginning of my dream. I have had many opportunities in the past couple months to get up close and be a part of law enforcement.

[I was] able to go on a ride along with different [police] officers to get the point of view of what it is like to be out on the road. I learned how the computers worked and everything that it was used for, which always was a huge curiosity for me. I learned the police talk they always use. I’m pretty good at being able to describe and/or say what they are saying, “Alpha-2-November-Hotel-4-7-Oscar.”

I was also able to meet with a K9 Unit officer Corporal Kleven and his partner Jaxon. He was super generous in helping to describe his duties and even stretched the rules for me and allowed me to go on a ride along with him, which was the best experience. He also did a one-on-one drug search at the police department so I could be up close and watch. Corporal Kleven taught me how the [K9 Unit] accepts dogs and trains them, how to use hand signals and offer treats to Jaxon.

Stacie Chatterton photo 2The best part of my CTE Internship was being able to have Officer Kerr, at Sky View High School, be a big part in helping me put all of this together. He taught me a lot of things that most [people] wouldn’t know. I had the chance to write tickets, go on patrol, watch security footage, and my most favorite part was him hand cuffing me.

There were a few things, out of many, I had an opportunity to be a part of because of the Work-Based Learning class at Sky View High School. This was the best class I could have chosen. Because of this experience it has put a whole new view on how I see law enforcement, and it helped me decide that I really want to stay on this pathway. My personal view of police officers is that they are there to help keep the community safe. There are bad ones out there, but most are not. The view of them right now is not a good one, but if you actually give them a chance, and not get in trouble with the law, you will see they are only there to help.

Ms. Larsen Is and Will Always Be My Hero

March 4th, 2015

Derek Eaton
Utah State Counselor Association
Lynn Jensen Memorial Scholarship Recipient

Derek Eaton pictureDerek Eaton, senior at Ben Lomond High School, tells about the positive impact Tami Larsen, school counselor at Ben Lomond High School, and Career and Technical Education (CTE) has had on his life.

Derek moved from Idaho to Utah to live with his grandmother after living in an abusive situation with his mother and stepfather. “My home life was more than any one person could bear,” said Derek. One day on his way to school Derek was in a car accident. As a result of the accident he received a serious traumatic brain injury that caused him to miss most of his junior year of high school. “My grandmother helped me get the medical and psychological care I needed. When I moved in I was afraid all the time and wouldn’t leave the house. I was really behind in school. While I lived in Idaho my grades weren’t very good. My freshman year I had a 2.28 grade point average. My sophomore year my average dropped to 1.89 and I had only earned a total of 11.49 credits [towards graduation]. I missed almost all of my junior school year due to my car accident and my hard home life. I felt hopeless and didn’t even know where to start.”

Eventually Derek was able to return to school. With the encouragement and support of Ms. Larsen Derek began to thrive in school, while also taking a CTE class in drafting. “During the spring of 2014, I was making medical progress and wanted to return to school. Ms. Larsen, my school counselor, reviewed my case and convinced Ben Lomond High School that even though I was really behind I was smart and worth the risk. Although I was still emotionally and physically broken, she helped me return to school for the 4th quarter of the 2014 [school year]. Daily Ms. Larsen talked to me, supported me, and encouraged me. Ms. Larsen encouraged and helped me start online high school classes. I began and completed four online classes. My grade point average rose to 3.66.”

With the guidance and encouragement of Ms. Larsen Derek enrolled in summer school at Ogden Weber Applied Technology College, where he caught up on his school work so he could graduate with his senor class. He later enrolled in Weber State University where he earned seven hours of concurrent enrollment credit. Ms. Larsen assisted Derek in registering for the ACT (scoring 30), complete college registration, and apply for scholarships. Ms. Larsen is his school counselor, advocate, friend, and most of all his hero.

Tami Larsen - Ben Lomond High SchoolDerek describes how, within one year, his life drastically changed for the better thanks to the guidance and direction of a school counselor who believed in him 100 percent. “One year ago I had no hope, no happiness, no dream, and was afraid all the time. I now understand and believe coming from such adversity doesn’t mean my life is over. I feel safe and know I have a real future. If Ms. Larsen hadn’t been an advocate for me, providing direction, encouragement, and support, I would have been considered a lost cause. She believes in me, works with me, makes me feel like I matter, and that I truly belong. I feel happy for the first time in my life, love school, and know I can do something positive with my life. Thanks to Ms. Larsen, I now believe in myself and I have worked very hard this last year. I have caught up in school and am earning credits towards my college degree. I now have a bright future and will attend college next fall.”

Derek will continue his education at Weber State University, where he will study computer science, after also being awarded the Weber State University Presidential Academic Scholarship.

Derek’s experience has been life changing and he hopes to someday provide help to someone in a similar situation. “People may say, counselors don’t do much, but Ms. Larsen is and will always be my hero. Words can’t express the gratefulness and care I feel towards her. I hope someday I will be able to pay it forward by providing a life changing opportunity to someone like me who is lost and hopeless in life. Ms. Larsen has helped me become a better person. She has taken the time to believe in me, support me, and encourage me. Because of her I know I will do great things in life.”


Save the Date: FIRST Robotics Competition

March 2nd, 2015

American Fork_TE_IMG_3467Plan now to attend the 2015 Utah Regional FIRST Robotics Competition March 13-14 at the Maverik Center in West Valley City, Utah. The FIRST Robotics Competition is called a “Varsity Sport for the Mind®” and has all of the excitement and stakes of a high school championship sports tournament. Forty-three teams from 11 states and Canada will compete for worldwide recognition and a chance to win over $20 million in college scholarships.

Under strict rules, limited resources, and tight time limits, teams of 25 students are challenged to raise funds, design a team brand, hone teamwork skills, build and program a robot to perform prescribed tasks against a field of competitors.

This year’s FIRST Robotics game is called “Recycle Rush” and is played by two alliances of three robots each. Robots score points by staking totes on scoring platforms, capping those stacks with recycling containers, and properly disposing of pool noodles, representing litter. In keeping with the recycling theme of the game, all game pieces used are reusable or recyclable by teams in their home locations or by FIRST at the end of the season.

Who: 43 teams from 11 states and Canada

What: Utah Regional FIRST Robotics Competition – Grades 9-12

Where: Maverik Center, West Valley City, Utah

When: Friday, March 13 and Saturday, March 14

A live stream of the competition can be watched on YouTube HERE.

Meet Zach Eberhard

February 27th, 2015

Zach EberhardZach Eberhard, a senior at Taylorsville High School, has been enthusiastically involved in FBLA since the start of his sophomore year. Zach served as last year’s chapter president at Taylorsville High School. Aside from FBLA he likes to participate in his school’s jazz band, music committee, choir, and math club. Zach feels very humbled to be the Utah FBLA state president. He is happy to be serving Utah FBLA members and is excited to show the rest of the state what FBLA is all about.

Join Zach and become a member of FBLA. Contact your school counselor to get connected with the FBLA advisor in your school.


Why Your Kids Should Participate in FFA

February 26th, 2015

By Buddy Deimler
Agricultural Education specialist at the Utah State Office of Education
Utah FFA advisor

Hurricane_Ag_IMG_4881Thank you to every Ag teacher in Utah who works hard to make a difference with every student, in every class, every day. Through Agricultural Education and FFA you are making a positive difference in the lives of young people. Your hard work and dedication is evident by the hours that you spend and by the success your students enjoy whether that success is at the local level, the state level or the national level. Thank you for going above and beyond the call of duty every day as you provide opportunities for your students. You do a great job!

Katie Pinke, a mother of three who lives in North Dakota, is a huge advocate of FFA. She says, “Do you know what FFA is all about? As a mom of an FFA member I do, but as a student and young adult I had no idea. My husband raves about the confidence and lifelong skills he gained through FFA. Our son, Hunter, joined FFA as an eighth grader and has been an active member for the past four years.” Below is a summary of Katie’s list of the “7 Reasons Why Your Kids Should Participate in FFA.”

  1. FFA is exhilarating.
  2. FFA is part of the agricultural education program offered to junior high and high school students. The FFA advisor and agricultural education instructor teaches and array of classes based on the interests and needs of the students.
  3. FFA is inclusive.
  4. FFA is competition with the highest level of integrity, compassion and encouragement of one another.
  5. FFA Career Development Events (CDEs) afford kids hands-on opportunities to test the skills they learn in a classroom, in industry-focused real-world events.
  6. FFA students learn by doing. FFA provides hands-on learning that teaches through entrepreneurship, internship or job placement, research or experimentation, and exploring new career opportunities.
  7. FFA members are tomorrow’s leaders. FFA teaches essential leadership skills that last a lifetime.

More than 11,000 FFA advisors and agriculture teachers deliver an integrated model of agricultural education, providing students with innovative and leading-edge education and enabling them to grow into competent leaders.

FFA student members participate in hands-on work experiences that assist them in developing life skills and discovering their career path to realize success. Nationwide, FFA student members earn more than $4 billion annually through their hands-on work experience.

Nationally FFA has 610,240 members in 7,665 chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. In Utah there are 6,012 FFA members in 80 chapters.

If you are not a member of FFA, and would like to become a member, talk to your school counselor to get connected with the FFA advisor in your school.

FFA Utah jackets 2011