Sleepy Eye agriculture teacher Mary Hoffmann was named ACTE Region III Teacher of the Year at this summer’s Association of Career and Technical Education conference in Des Moines, Iowa.
ACTE is the largest national education association of successful professionals dedicated to advancing education that prepares youth and adults for successful careers. Its members represent all facets of vocational and technical training.
ACTE represents educators in the fields of agriculture, business, career guidance and development, engineering and technical education, family and consumer sciences, science health, business and industrial education and post-secondary, adult and career education. Region III includes Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Missouri, and Wisconsin.
Hoffmann was selected as the recipient of Region III Teacher of the Year for her work in agricultural education with the Sleepy Eye Future Farmers of America and as a leader in her school, state and nation. Hoffmann’s teaching philosophy is to provide students with basic agricultural knowledge, as well as skills for the future.
She said she had many goals for the program based on this philosophy, including helping students realize the importance of agriculture in their daily lives, providing FFA opportunities, and helping students become better people and to teach with heart and passion.
“You never know what life is like for some students at home,” she says, “But at school, it can be really great in your classroom if you are the role model and the caring person the student needs.”
Hoffmann serves on the Minnesota State Teach Agriculture Results and State Fair committees, the FFA Adult Council, and also serves as a mentor for various programs.
She is also a grants writer for the Minnesota Association of Agriculture Educators. Over the years, Hoffmann has secured funding for statewide professional development opportunities for agriculture educators.
The $150,000 grants she has won include grants for courses in carpentry, food science and chemistry, small motors, electricity, floral design, record keeping, landscaping, construction and welding.
Nationally, Hoffmann serves on the National Board of Agricultural Education as president-elect. The National Council for Agricultural Education works to stimulate positive growth in agricultural education.
The council provides stakeholder leadership in educating about agriculture, food, fiber and natural resource systems. It strives to highlight issues important to agricultural education and stimulate action to support these issues.
The council serves as a common meeting place for agricultural education and represents organizations and entities representing students, teachers, teacher trainers, heads of state, alumni, industry and government.
Hoffmann said she was honored to receive the award and excited about the next steps in the process, which include an interview and selection for the nation’s top teacher of the year at the ACTE Awards gala in Las Vegas, Nevada on May 3. november. .