UMFK and Region Two School of Applied Technology Partnering to Provide Students with First Year of a Nursing Degree

Imagine being a high school student enrolled in the Health Sciences Program at the Region Two School of Applied Technology knowing you can graduate from high school with the first year of a Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree from the University of Maine at Fort Kent complete.  A new collaboration between the UMFK’s Nursing Program, Region Two School of Applied Technology in Houlton, and UMFK’s Rural U Early College and Concurrent Enrollment Program now makes that opportunity possible for these high school students.

The new program, called Rural U Nursing: Health Sciences Alliance Program brings together the strengths of the programs mentioned above and provides students the opportunity to earn 24 or more university credits, one full academic year of credits that serve as the first year of a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing at UMFK.  Students completing the program can come into UMFK’s Nursing program as 2nd year students.  UMFK’s Nursing program is also available at the University of Maine at Presque Isle adding yet another option after high school for these students.

“We are so pleased to partner with Region Two to bring freshman level college courses to high school students who are interested in pursuing a nursing degree,” states Dr. Erin Soucy, UMFK’s Dean of Undergraduate Nursing.  Dave Keaton, Director of the Region II School of Applied Technology adds, “What a tremendous opportunity for our Intro to Medical Professions students and for the workforce in Aroostook County!”

Credits earned in this program will include articulated credit UMFK grants for Maine CNA Certification earned at Region Two, credits from a concurrent enrollment NUR 200 Introduction to Professional Nursing to be taught at Region Two by Health Sciences Instructor Amber Sloat, credits for Anatomy and Physiology I and II classes taught at the Houlton Higher Education Center, and early college and concurrent enrollment classes earned through UMFK’s Rural U program.  While this program provides an accelerated pathway to a nursing degree, students will not be charged tuition for any of these credits; thus also providing a more affordable pathway to a BSN degree. Scott Voisine, UMFK’s Dean of Community Education adds, “All early college programs like Rural U give students a chance to experience college learning and earn credits more affordably, but this new collaboration takes it one step further provides a direct onboarding of students into a rigorous and rewarding career pathway at UMFK.”

Rural U Nursing is a direct response to the need to increase the number of nurses in Aroostook County, in Maine, and in the Region.  Students will be able to begin the program immediately this fall.

This story was submitted by Dave Keaton, Director of the Region Two School of Applied Technology as part of the Maine Schools Sharing Success Campaign. To submit a story or idea, email it to Rachel at

Nominations Open for Career and Technical Education (CTE) Teacher of the Year

Maine Administrators of Career and Technical Education (MACTE) has opened nominations for the annual Career and Technical Education (CTE) Teacher of the Year Award. This is an annual award that recognize teachers who are providing outstanding career and technical education programs for youth and/or adults in their respective fields and communities. Recipients of this award must be nominated by their CTE Director.


Individual members who are currently employed as full-time classroom/laboratory teachers in a career and technical education program in Maine are eligible recipients for this award. Nominees must be classroom/laboratory teachers at the time of selection. Contributions and achievements on which the nomination is based should have been made within the past ten years.

The nominee’s Center needs to be an active member of the Maine Administrators of Career and Technical Education, MACTE at the time of application.

How to Nominate:

Submit a completed nomination form (word doc) and supporting nomination materials electronically via e-mail to by September 18, 2020. Please note that this year, due to COVID-19 restrictions, MACTE is unable to complete the nomination process at their summer meetings.

All nominations will be reviewed by the MACTE Executive Committee and a winner will be chosen from nominations submitted. The announcement of the winner will be made at the virtual MACTE conference on October 8, 2020.

For more information about how to nominate, including what the supporting nomination materials are, see the nomination (word doc). Further questions can be directed to MACTE President Rob Callahan at


English Language Arts, Life and Career Ready, and Mathematics Standards Updated

Final adoption of Chapter 132 is effective July 18, 2020, following the submission of all required Administrative Procedures Act (APA) documentation with the Secretary of State’s Office. Chapter 132: Learning Results: Parameters for Essential Instruction revised the English Language Arts, Life and Career Ready (formerly Career and Education Development), and Mathematics standards.

The Maine DOE will be providing guidance and resources to SAUs in making the transition to the revised standards throughout the school year. There is no pre-determined date when SAUs must make the transition to the revised standards. It is the Department’s expectation that SAUs will use their own professional judgment and phase in the revised standards at a pace that makes sense for their students and for their educational practice. While, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in-person events are not planned at this time, digital resources, virtual training, and “office hours” with content specialists are ongoing and will support professional learning about the updated standards.

The updated English Language Arts standards are streamlined, edited from the previous standards to clarify related or similar learning goals; the standards are slimmed to focus on the essential outcomes for literacy development; the updated standards are also reordered to emphasize that the language strand is central to the development of the other ELA strands. Visit English Language Arts/Literacy content standards here and contact Danielle “Dee” Saucier for K-5 and Morgan Dunton for 6-12 supports.

The Life and Career Ready content standards build from and update the 2007 Career and Education Development standards and include the braiding of social emotional learning with career development.  Visit the Life and Career Ready Standards here and contact Diana Doiron for K-12 supports.

The updated Mathematics standards are reformatted, edited and streamlined from the previous standards to better articulate the progression of learning within and across the grade spans. Visit Mathematics Standards here and contact Jennifer Robitaille for K-5 and Michele Mailhot for 6-12 supports.

Bath Tech Center Students Partner With Community Organizations to Build Low Income Housing

On March 25, 2020, Bath Housing Development Corporation undertook a project to move a newly constructed house, built by local students, to 57 Chestnut Street in Bath, Maine. This unique project is the result of a partnership between Bath Housing, the Bath Regional Career and Technical Center (BRCTC), Bath Rotary Charitable Trust, and Vaillancourt Construction.

Video credit:  Keegan Denery.

With financial support from the Bath Rotary Charitable Trust, students in the BRCTC Carpentry program are introduced to basic residential construction techniques through hands on application of theories taught in the classroom and applied in the construction of a modular home. Students experience framing the home, laying out and building risers, interior trim, sheetrock, roofing, and siding installing cabinetry, windows, and doors. At the conclusion of the two-year carpentry program, students leave with the skills to enter the field of residential construction and/or continue their education at the Community College level – along with the pride in knowing they built a house.

The home is 720 square foot with two bedrooms, one bathroom, and an open floor plan with cathedral ceilings in the kitchen/living area. The house will have a zero-step entry into the home and a simple front porch. The house will go on the market early this summer and will be sold to a family at or below 80 percent of the Area Median Income.  Funds to acquire the site were provided by MaineHousing through its Land Acquisition Program.

Bath Housing purchased the BRCTC-built house from Bath Rotary Charitable Trust, and contracted with Vaillancourt Builders LLC – a long-term partner of the BRCTC Program – to oversee the sitework, building move, and finish work. Working with Dirigo Structures, the building was moved from its worksite on Congress Avenue to Chestnut Street on March 25.

This article was submitted by Julie Kenny, Director of the Bath Regional Career & Technical Center as part of the Maine Schools Sharing Success Campaign. To submit a story or an idea, email it to Rachel at

Broadening the Path: Design Principles for Middle Grades CTE

The middle grades have become the agreed upon starting point for high-quality Career Technical Education (CTE) programs, as this represents a critical time for students making important decisions that may have a lasting impact on their careers. Yet, there remains a lack of consensus among state and local leaders on what makes up a high-quality middle grades CTE program or policy. With the promotion of middle grades CTE in the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V), it is an ideal time for state and local leaders to consider how to best support and expand CTE in middle school.

To support this work, Advance CTE and Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) have released Broadening the Path: Design Principles for Middle Grades CTE that lays out a theory of action for middle grades CTE, including:

  • Outcomes for student learning,
  • Ten design principles that should undergird any middle grades CTE program or policy, and
  • Core programmatic elements for developing and expanding CTE into middle grades.

The paper also includes a design principles self-assessment for state and local leaders to evaluate their current middle grades CTE policies and programs.

Read the report here.

This resource was created with the support of the Middle Grades CTE Shared Solutions Workgroup, comprised of national, state and local leaders, convened by Advance CTE with support from ACTE and generously funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.