Ashley Rogers, an agriculture educator and Future Farmers of America (FFA) advisor at Nicholas County Middle and High School, was named as the 2022 National ACTE New Teacher of the Year by the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE).
This award recognizes new CTE teachers who have made significant contributions toward innovative and unique career and technical education programs and shown a professional commitment early in their careers.
“It’s an important moment for a CTE teacher like Ashley Rogers to be recognized for her dedication to her students,” said Kentucky Commissioner of Education Jason E. Glass. “This program exemplifies the highest standards in preparing Kentucky’s students for future careers. We are very proud of her and this significant achievement.”
When Rogers was hired, the program had an average of 60-65 students enrolled in agricultural courses out of 514 students in grades 7-12. Since that time, her two-teacher department has grown the program to over 185 students, with more than 120 members involved in FFA.
In the agricultural education program, 98% of graduating seniors are career ready because of their passing rates on the end-of-program assessment and industry certifications.
Rogers currently serves as a National Agriscience Teacher Ambassador, by-laws and policies secretary for the National Association of Agricultural Educators, scholarship committee chair for the Kentucky Association of Agricultural Educators and is a member of the Kentucky Association of Agricultural Educators Region for Meeting Planning Committee.
Within her school, she serves as the agricultural education co-op coordinator, greenhouse coordinator, efficiency committee chair, co-lead class sponsor of the Class of 2022, school-based decision making (SBDM) council elections coordinator, trauma and resilience team member, local district facility planning committee election coordinator, SBDM secretary and also is a substitute bus driver.
“She is a teacher that is really dedicated to serving her students. She’s always looking to the future so that she can prepare them,” Nicholas County Middle and High School Principal Tim Molton said. “She’s not only developing her students academically, but her strong work ethic is being modeled by her students as well.
“We had a bad flood in Carlisle during the summer, and the day after the flood, Mrs. Rogers organized a cleanup effort with her students. It was a tremendous thing. She is service-centered and always finding ways to improve herself.”
Through her work, she has earned the National Association of Agricultural Educators Region for Early Career Teacher, Kentucky Association of Agricultural Educators Outstanding Early Career Teacher of the Year, and the Teachers Turn the Key awards.
“I wholeheartedly wish this was a multiple person award. This achievement is just as much my co-teacher’s, Cameron Earlywine, as it is mine,” Rogers said. “This award is for every person that has poured into our students, program, school and community. Lastly, this award should be for our students, who have always believed and trusted in our program.
“I hope to use this experience to advocate for career and technical education, provide more learning experiences for students, and work alongside those in our profession to continue to grow. I am absolutely humbled and honored to have received this award. It still doesn’t seem real; this profession is truly magic.”
Rogers was one of five finalists for the 2022 national title. The national winner was announced at the ACTE Virtual Awards Gala recognizing the best CTE educators in the country on Nov. 30.