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December 22, 2005

Jennifer Fennell or Cathy Schroeder
(850) 245-0413

Department of Education Employee Wins National Health Educator Award

TALLAHASSEE — Judy B. Conlin, R.N.M.S., State Supervisor for Health Science Education for the Florida Department of Education (DOE), recently received the Outstanding Vocational Educator Award. The national award, presented by the Health Science Technology Education Division of the National Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE), was given this year to Conlin in recognition of her significant contributions to Health Science Technology Education.

"At a time when Florida is seeing a critical shortage of healthcare workers, Judy works tirelessly to ensure health care students in Florida are receiving cutting-edge education and the proper encouragement toward a successful career," said Education Commissioner John L. Winn. "I congratulate her on this national recognition and on behalf of the state extend our deepest appreciation for all of her efforts."

A registered nurse with a master's degree in education and a master's degree in administration, Conlin serves on more than 10 state and national health science and technology boards. As the DOE Supervisor, she oversees more than 100 state programs with 100,000 enrollees in middle and high schools as well as career and technical centers and community colleges. In order to convey effective and creative teaching strategies for educators in the Sunshine State, Conlin organizes and participates in statewide meetings and presentations, modeling the behaviors necessary for successful practices. Conlin's contributions include the development of cutting-edge, core health science curriculum, as well as free handbooks, brochures and posters for students and teachers. Additionally, Conlin assisted 19 community colleges and career and technical centers with grants for human patient simulators; technology that, in other states, is only available in large universities and hospital complexes. These efforts have helped to make Florida a national leader in Health Science Education articulation.

The ACTE's Outstanding Vocational Educator Award honors vocational and technical educators who provide noteworthy support to furthering and improving the progress of Health Science Technology Education. As the largest national education association focusing on the advancement of workforce education, ACTE seeks to enrich workforce experience, increase public awareness for career and technical programs and foster growth in funding for these programs. The award was presented to Conlin earlier this month at the 2005 ACTE Convention and Career Tech Expo in Kansas City, Missouri.