Kristina Yamada is currently a CTE Education Specialist for the Utah State Board of Education. She is a licensed educator and adjunct professor at Utah Valley University. Kristina has worked in education for the past 21 years and has taught students from Kindergarten to College! She believes that we must motivate all learners in ascertaining their inner strengths and abilities and discovering what truly inspires them, making him or her unique in a world where assimilation is the norm. She loves to do this with student experiences, she has been a student advisor for FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America), GSA (Gay Straight Alliance) and currently oversees SkillsUSA for the state. Though her advocacy work with these student led organizations and the JACL (Japanese American Citizens League), she has traveled with students to from California to Washington DC and as far as Japan.
Kristina currently oversees the K12 Computer Science Grant Program and is passionate about computer science for ALL students K12 and beyond. She believes that Computer Science is the new literacy that must be experienced by each student! She manages legislative funds to expand K12 Computer Science to every school district in the state. Currently she is at 33 school districts and 19 charter schools throughout Utah and working to obtain 100% of all students!
To expand computer science and CTE (Career & Technical Education) in Utah she co-wrote a U.S. Department of Education Grant to bring CTE to the Afterschool Programs! Not only is she able to expose students to the benefits of CTE and Computer Science during the school day, she is also excited to make the same connections with our afterschool students through the 21st CCLC Program.
Another focus for Kristina is Alternative Education. She has spent many years working with alternative ed students, helping them through life crisis to realize they can be productive, contributing members of our society! She has worked with students in youth custody centers ascertain computer skills that can help keep them from recidivism. She has achieved the title of Executive Director of the National Alternative Education Association through her hard work and dedication in alternative education.