Mrs. Bonifas wins CTE Teacher of the Year Award for Agriculture Education

The news cycle of the past few weeks hasn’t been very promising. How about something to celebrate?

Blue Hill Public Schools is excited to announce that Mrs. Bonifas has received the Career and Technical Education (CTE) Richard Katt Outstanding Nebraska Career Educator Award!  Mrs. Bonifas won the award for the Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources division.  Mrs. Bonifas currently teaches at Blue Hill Community Schools. Mrs. Bonifas is in charge of the Agriculture and FFA Program.  The Agriculture Education program at Blue Hill ranges from Animal Science and Plant Science to Welding and Small Engines.  Mrs. Bonifas has forged (no pun intended) relationships with students that have lasted a lifetime.  For each subject area Mrs. Bonifas teaches, she connects with students with all types of interests and abilities.  In the summer, Mrs. Bonifas even teaches a welding class to other educators with her father, Jon Moore.  Her dad is a retired welder.  Wonder where she gets it? 

 

Blue Hill Students flexing their muscle at Husker Harvest Days.

Mrs. Bonifas is always looking for new and exciting opportunities to pique interest for her students.  As a result, Mrs. Bonifas and her students have received numerous grants and awards over the years to help provide opportunities to and for students.  Mrs. Bonifas and her students have won many grants and scholarships over the years as well.  The grants have ranged from helping to pay for a greenhouse and tower garden to material to raise trout and materials to start a concrete business.  There is no shortage of fun things to do in the Ag Barn!  Matter of fact, she will be having a plant sale this spring and we encourage you to BUY LOCAL to support the FFA Program! 

Greenhouse Plants

Mrs. Bonifas and her students spend many hours in the greenhouse.

Mrs. Bonifas is looked up to in the CTE community for her guidance not only for students, but for student teachers.  Mrs. Bonifas has set the bar high for what she expects in class from her students and also from what she expects of her student teachers.  To no one’s surprise, there is a waiting line each year from students at UNL to student teach at Blue Hill.  

Mrs. Bonifas & Student Teacher Ms. Nolles

Mrs. Bonifas is in her 20th year of instruction all at Blue Hill.  Mrs. Bonifas received her B.S. degree in Agriculture Education with an endorsement in Biology from The University of Nebraska at Lincoln in 2000. She received her M.S in Biology from The University of Nebraska at Kearney in 2006. Mrs. Bonifas previously received the NAAE Outstanding Teacher of The Year in 2010.  In 2014, she won the Region III Ideas Unlimited Award for best new idea in Agriculture Education.  She then presented her idea at The National Agriculture Educators Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana.  In 2016, she received the NAAE Outstanding Agriculture Teacher Mentor Award for her work with student teachers and younger members.  Mrs. Bonifas' FFA program has been awarded as one of Nebraska's Top 19 Programs for two of the last three years.  Mrs. Bonifas will receive her award at the State CTE Conference in Kearney.

We are happy that Mrs. Bonifas is part of our team.  Congrats Mrs. Bonifas! 

Check out the Blue Hill FFA Page at this link shorturl.at/wzJU9

Send Mrs. Bonifas a note - melissabonifas@bluehillschools.org