Alum Katie Fredrickson Wins Teacher of the Year Award
Katie Fredrickson, who was graduated from USU in 2010 with Honors, was named the Bill and Carol Strong Teacher of the Year in the new teacher category by the Utah Council of Teachers of English (UCTE) at its fall conference November 11, 2016, in Salt Lake City. UCTE recognizes three teachers annually: early career, mid-career, and veteran. Candidates are judged on their teaching, service, and professional activities.
Katie has been teaching at Bingham High School in South Jordan since 2014. Although a new teacher, she has ventured into professional publication. She is a contributing writer to Norton’s Little Seagull Handbook, and the 2015 Utah English Journal published her article on the role of “mindfulness” in teaching that make use of Brene Brown’s work. Katie said, “I really enjoyed writing that article, but I sometimes felt like I was such a new teacher that I shouldn't even try. How could I have anything important to say? However, I love my job and am excited to professionalize. I'm always looking for ways to be a better teacher. And I love Brown's work and wanted to share it with others I work with.”
Joyce Kinkead, Professor of English, and mentor to Katie’s Honors Thesis, nominated her for the award. She said, “Katie won the outstanding Honors thesis award for her comparison of Edith Wharton’s Summer to Judy Blume’s Forever. Both deal with the sexual initiation of young women, one in 1905 and one in 1975. Katie’s work was exemplary, tracing the cultural shifts in young adults and intimacy. I was so pleased to see her article in last year’s Utah English Journal. Frankly, most new teachers are just trying to survive, so it is a delight to see a teacher contributing to the profession in meaningful ways with publication.”
While at USU, Katie was a Writing Fellow, and she was also named Outstanding English Education Student in 2009. She completed a master’s degree in Rhetoric and Composition from BYU, and she’s also taught in Chile.