Educator-of-the-Year Award

This award represents HI-TEC's commitment to recognize community college faculty who make significant contributions to the education and training of today's technology workforce. Nominees for the award must have had a demonstrated broader impact on technology education on both a local and national level. The Educator-of-the-Year Award recognizes a community college educator for outstanding contributions to advanced technological education.

2019 Recipient: John Nelson, Del Mar College, Corpus Christi, Texas
John Nelson has been a member of Del Mar College’s Geographic Information Systems (GIS) program since 1999. He began as a student and has since served as program technician, adjunct faculty, and now full-time associate professor. Between 2008 and 2013 John served as CoPI and GIS SME for the GeoTech Center. During that time, he developed several GIS training modules and provided workshops to students, K–12 teachers, and professionals. John served as GIS SME for the National Information, Security, and Geospatial Technologies Consortium (NISGTC) Center from 2011 to 2014, during which time he participated in producing five new GIS courses using an innovative accelerated eight-week format. The goal of preparing GIS-ready technicians in as little as six months was achieved, and numerous technicians graduated and are now employed. Many of John’s modules now serve as OER resources on the U.S. Department of Labor website. John pioneered the innovative use of continuing education-to-academic-credit workflow, which enables unemployed/underemployed adult learners to accelerate their technology training through intense eight-week-long cohorts. Once employed, adult learners are able to convert the CE courses into credit-bearing academic transcript entries and achieve academic degrees at a later date. Since 2016 John has served as CoPI, SME, and instructor for the NSF-funded Unmanned Autonomous Systems Technology Education Consortium (UASTEC) project. He authored two new UAS courses and coauthored a third UAS course with Dr. Michael Starek (TAMUCC). These courses are now used to educate UAS technicians throughout South Texas.

Industry Recognition Award

This award represents HI-TEC's commitment to recognize industry colleagues who make significant contributions to the education and training of today's technology workforce. Nominees for the award must have had a demonstrated broader impact on technology education on both a local and national level. The Industry Recognition Award recognizes key industry personnel for outstanding contributions to promote advanced technological education.

Recipient: Scot McLemore, Honda North America, Inc., Marysville, Ohio
Scot McLemore has been a tireless advocate of developing early-college pathways and experiential learning programs to promote advanced manufacturing education throughout Ohio. Scot is setting the standard for collaboration between community colleges and K–12 districts in meeting the need for industrial maintenance technicians. Scot was instrumental in the development of Columbus State Community College's Modern Manufacturing Work Study program. This five-semester program culminates in an AAS in electro-mechanical engineering technology and includes a year-long paid co-op during students' second year of coursework. Honda’s support, partnership, and forward-looking approach have led to the placement of more than 100 students at over thirty Central Ohio employers. Students graduate from the program with full-time job offers from industry partners and little to no debt. Scot has also ensured the development of a strong manufacturing technician career pathway through the creation of career exploration programs for middle schools, the development of CTE programs at high schools and career centers, adoption of Modern Manufacturing Work Study programs across the state, and tuition reimbursement for bachelor's degree attainment. Scot's unwavering passion for advanced technician education can be seen in his participation in efforts such as Project Lead the Way, the STEM Industry Council, Men of Color in STEM, and the EPIC Initiative. Along with CSCC's President David Harrison, Scot testified before the Joint Economics Committee of the US House of Representatives on innovative strategies for addressing workforce development. Scot is also responsible for Honda's national workforce strategy for technician roles.

Innovative Program Award

This award represents HI-TEC's commitment to recognize innovation in advanced technology education. The Innovative Program Award is designed to recognize a team of advanced technology education professionals that has designed and implemented a significant innovation, which has led to a positive impact on student enrollment, retention, and/or advanced technological education.

Recipient: Business and Industry Leadership Team (BILT) Model
Pictured (L to R): Glenn Wintrich, Chairman Emeritus of the BILT; Ann Beheler, PI for CTC and Originator of the BILT Model; Matthew Glover, Current Chairman of the BILT
The Business and Industry Leadership Team (BILT) model—developed and disseminated by the National Convergence Technology Center (CTC) at Collin College in Frisco, Texas—turns the idea of an “advisory council” on its head. The BILT model invites business and industry leaders to take active and engaged roles in co-leading programs so that students learn the skills the job market actually demands. This includes a formal process in which BILT members annually vote on the job skills entry-level workers will need over the coming two years. Ann Beheler is the primary architect of the BILT model. The BILT approach has its roots in familiar processes like the DACUM, but Ann has refined the process and made it her mission to disseminate it far and wide. Since the National CTC was first funded in 2012, Ann and her staff at the CTC have developed toolkits and worksheets, recorded webinars, made presentations, appeared on panels, and hosted role-playing workshops. Looking just at the 31 conferences in fifteen states plus Washington, DC, where the BILT model has been delivered, 1284 people have heard about this approach. If you include attendees of workshops and webinars, the number jumps to over 2500 nonduplicated faculty, administrators, and businesspeople who have been taught why the BILT model works and how programs can transform their advisory committees into BILTs. Many groups have adopted the BILT model as a result of Ann’s intervention. The BILT model has become something of a requirement for ATE grants. NSF program officers have more than once steered to Ann a grant applicant lacking a business engagement plan. It’s a concept that is transforming programs nationwide.