Thursday, 15 October 2020 22:46

Two Denver-Area Teachers Awarded $100,000 for Skilled Trades Programs

Written by Audra Streetman, CBS 4 Denver News
Two Denver-Area Teachers Awarded $100,000 for Skilled Trades Programs CBS


Two Colorado high school teachers were named winners of the 2020 Harbor Freight Tools for Schools Prize for Teaching Excellence.

On Oct. 14, Cherry Creek Innovation Campus automotive technology teacher Brian Manley and STEM School Highlands Ranch engineering teacher Mike Shallenberger were each surprised with $100,000.


Manley and Shallenberger represent two of only three grand prize winners nationwide. The award designates $70,000 for their high school skilled trades program and $30,000 for the teacher.


The award was created in 2017 by Eric Smidt, the founder of national tool retailer Harbor Freight Tools.


“Trades teachers are educating and developing the tradespeople of the future,” Smidt said. “Many of the students in their classes today will become---as soon as next spring---the workers who keep our critical care infrastructure, our communication networks, our homes and cars up and running. The prize is our way of saying thank you to their teachers.”


Manley teaches automotive technology at Cherry Creek Innovation Campus in Centennial, CO. This fall, he will begin his 26th year of teaching. The master automobile technician is currently in his final year of a doctoral program focused on leadership for education equity.


Shallenberger is an engineering teacher at STEM School Highlands Ranch. The 21-year veteran teacher designed a Career Discovery program that offers tours and facilitate paid internship opportunities. Shallenberger’s students have the chance to earn their associate’s degree, tuition-free, while still in high school.

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