The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) has announced that Career and Technical Education (CTE) Dental Assisting Teacher Jennifer Probst is a finalist for the 2021 ACTE New Teacher of the Year award. Probst won the 2021 ACTE New Teacher of the Year at the state level, and her win as the Region 1 2021 ACTE New Teacher of the Year qualifies her for the national competition. This esteemed honor recognizes new CTE teachers who have made significant contributions to innovative and unique CTE programs, and who have shown a professional commitment early in their careers. Probst is one of five finalists for the national title. As a finalist, she is preparing for the interview portion of the competition.
Probst has more than 20 years of experience working in dental practices, and she has been an office manager, dental assistant and hygienist. She achieved Fellowship with the Academy of Laser Dentistry in 2016 and sits on the Academy of Laser Dentistry’s Laser Safety Committee.
Probst has a strong passion for educating her students in oral health, health science and employability skills. Since September 2016 when she started teaching at the CTE Center, Probst evolved the Dental Assisting program from a one-year program to a two-year program. She re-designed the course to be aligned with the New York State Dental Licensing Requirements and to meet the requirements for the NYS CTE Program Approval process, allowing students to receive NYS Technical Endorsement at the completion of the program. Probst worked diligently with industry partners in the community to increase work-based learning opportunities, resulting in better prepared students that are college and career ready. Students receive more than 200 hours of work-based learning opportunities in the community. Probst added over 30 dental industry partners to the program, including dental labs and dental offices.
Probst has been the chair for the SkillsUSA state dental assisting competition for two years. Every year, her students compete in knowledge and performance skills. She has sent six students to state competition, and three moved on to Nationals, placing in the top 10 for Dental Assisting.
ACTE’s national finalists and winners will be honored in December during ACTE’s Virtual CareerTech VISION 2020.