Top Educators in Career and Technical Education Recognized with Top Tech Awards



Manitowoc Lincoln High teacher Rick Conrad accepts his Top Tech Award from Lakeshore Technical College at the Lakeshore Culinary Institute in Sheboygan. Mishicot School District counselors Amber Brewer and Marci Kuhn pose with their Top Tech Awards from Lakeshore Technical College. From L to R: Tom Ellenbecker, Mishicot High School Principal, Kuhn, Brewer, Colleen Timm, Mishicot School District Superintendant.


Lakeshore Technical College presented their  2nd annual awards Top Tech Awards to recognize the top influencers in career and technical education in Manitowoc and Sheboygan counties.  The five awards were presented at a reception at the Lakeshore Culinary Institute on February 20th.

Educators from Manitowoc County were recognized with three of the awards.

Rick Conrad of Manitowoc Lincoln High School serves as the school’s Youth Apprenticeship Liaison, Transition Specialist, Work Experience Teacher, and Tech Ed teacher. Conrad was nominated for his role in the approximately 30 students a year from Manitowoc Lincoln High School participating in Youth Apprenticeship. Conrad sets up job shadows for all Lincoln students, transitions special needs students into the workforce through a fundamental work experience program, and coordinates over 50 students in Lincoln's work experience programs. He has worked with all departments on their career and technical education advisory committees, and is currently working with the Tech Ed department on their 3 year plan and new course proposals.

“The ultimate thing is I get to help kids figure out what they want to do with their lives and that is a pretty cool opportunity to have,” said Conrad. “I believe in career and technical education so much that I switched from being an English teacher after getting my Master’s degree. While English was fun, I couldn’t always answer kids who would ask me when they would ever use this knowledge. I don’t have that issue as a Tech Ed teacher and I love it.”

Marcy Kuhn and Amber Brewer, Academic Advisors and Guidance Counselors for Mishicot High School and Mishicot Middle School, were also presented with a Top Tech Award for their leadership, tenacity, and passion for students’ post-secondary success. Their High School Advisement Period provides weekly lesson plans to each of the four grade levels to better prepare students after the end of high school. Their Career Portfolio project implements student, parent, and school counselor meetings at key transition points in a student’s school career. During these meetings, the student’s strengths and areas of improvement, future plans, and goal setting are discussed with assessments aiding students and parents in their course choices and development of their 4 year plans. This duo is sought after as a resource by other organizations and districts to replicate this success.

“Whenever we go out to talk about our portfolio program, we’re usually asked if we’ve been able to increase the percentage of students who go on to earn a bachelor’s degree,” said Kuhn. “We always tell them that is not our goal. When we started, we had 13% of kids who said they didn’t know what they wanted to do after high school. Today we’re at 2% because we work with LTC and Manitowoc County businesses to job shadow and get kids technical education.” 

2013 winners Top Tech Award winners  Ron Schneider and Dave Teske from Kiel High School attended the event that also included a demonstration of a software program that quickly produces local economic, salary and employer demand data for a large number of careers. A panel of LTC alumni also shared their stories of success through career and technical education.   Career and Technical Education prepares people for specific trades, crafts and careers or a professional position in fields such as engineering, accounting, nursing, health, and agriculture as well as many other fields.

Terry Hendrikse, Top Tech Award Winner

Connie Lund, Top Tech Award Winner

About Lakeshore Technical College

Each year more than 10,000 people enroll in courses at Lakeshore Technical College. They rely on LTC for job preparation, to earn a degree, upgrade a specialized skill, train as an apprentice, or seek a high school equivalency. LTC faculty and staff meet students where they are in life and help them get one step closer to achieving their goals.

LTC is a nationally recognized technical college. The college was ranked the #2 two-year college in the nation for adult learners by Washington Monthly, the #17 trade school in the nation by Forbes, #11 in the nation for two-year college educational outcomes by, a top-150 two-year college for the fifth consecutive time by the Aspen Institute, and a top 10 Bellwether Award finalist.

Approximately 800 students graduate from LTC each year, and LTC’s associate degree graduates earn a median salary of $47,800* per year. In addition to the Cleveland campus, LTC serves students in Manitowoc and Sheboygan, and offers classes at additional sites throughout the district. Visit LTC at

*Source: 2019 LTC Graduate Outcomes report, 795 graduates contacted to complete the survey; 508 graduates or 64% completed the survey.

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