Jennifer Ortman named 2019 Georgia Adviser of the Year

Jennifer Ortman, adviser at Mountain View High School, has been recognized as the 2019 Georgia high school media Adviser of the Year by the Georgia Scholastic Press Association.

Jennifer Ortman goes to the stage to collect her awARd for adviser of the year.

Jennifer Ortman goes to the stage to collect her awARd for adviser of the year.

The job of an educator is not an easy one, and each year presents its own unique challenges. However, this year was particularly challenging for Ortman. This winter break,  she experienced a terrible heartbreak—the passing of a former student. Determined not to let her student’s name disappear in history, she developed a scholarship in her name, the Shayan Memorial: Inspire, Lead, Excel, or simply put, the SMILE Scholarship. According to Ortman, her student, Shayan, inspired happiness everywhere she went. Ortman wrote, “Shayan preserved memories for people through photographs and writing, so I decided I wanted to help preserve her memory in some way.”

One of Ortman’s recommenders stated that “her impact on {her students}  goes far beyond the ink and paper of her publications. Her impact follows them well beyond 2:10 p.m. and May 25. Her impact on them is a strong foundation upon which they can rocket into their future where they successfully and wonderfully manage projects and time, organize themselves and groups, evaluate themselves and their peers, respect themselves and others, conduct personal and professional inquiry, utilize resourcefulness, resolve conflicts, maintain balanced productivity and achieve at high levels.”

“She gives her students a place to thrive, a place to excel, and a place to belong,” the nomination continued. “She gives them a space to feel safe, a space to grow, and a space to explore, not only who they are now, but also who they want to be. She gives them a home to plant roots, branch out, and reach for the sky.”

Ortman was recognized at the 2019 Spring Workshop and Awards on April 9 at the UGA Georgia Center.

Ortman was selected by a panel of judges from a pool of very deserving nominees who truly represent the best of high school journalism advisers, each with their own remarkable accomplishments and unwavering commitment to their students.