This award is given in recognition of a teacher providing outstanding career and technical education programs for youth and/or adults in their respective fields and communities. It is sponsored by Cisco.
New York is pleased to be the home of the 2013-2014 ACTE Teacher of the Year. On December 4, 2013, at the ACTE Awards Banquet, Tara L. Berescik, Agricultural Educator at Tri-Valley Tech, Grahamsville, New York and ACTE’s Region I candidate for Teacher of the Year, was awarded the national honor. The NYS Association for Career and Technical Education’s president, Terry Hughes; members of the NY Association of Agricultural Educators, staff from the Career and Technical Education Technical Assistance Center; and other NYS CTE educators were in the audience to applaud her achievement. Tara is one of just a few NYS educators who have been fortunate to receive any of the ACTE awards.
As an agricultural educator and FFA adviser at Tri-County School District for the past 13 years, Tara Berescik remains a source of inspiration and support for her students even after they have left her classroom. As a teacher known for her sympathy and aptitude for maximizing potential in others, Berescik is frequently called upon by former students for her advice concerning challenging college and career decisions. A former student (and one of eight who has gone on to pursue a career as an agricultural education instructor), said, “Tara dedicates her life to her students and does whatever it takes to ensure their success. For Tara, her dedication to her students lasts around the clock, every day.”
In addition to advising her award-winning FFA team after hours, Berescik teaches eight classes a day, covering a variety of disciplines in which she integrates not only hands-on experience but crosswalks into math, science and English. In her floral sciences classes, students conduct experiments on home-grown flowers and learn how to run their own floral business (the school floral shop has completed floral arrangements for 48 weddings.) Students collaborate with the NYC Reservoir System to learn about water quality control in environmental science and study animal physiology through hands-on manipulation of non-living specimen parts in the Cornell curriculum-based course. Berescik has even taken the classroom outside the country, arranging field trips to Ireland, Australia and Costa Rica to learn about international agriculture topics, from the science of growing coffee to the genetic differences in horses.
The NYSACTE and the CTE Technical Assistance Center of NY congratulate Tara on this outstanding achievement.