ISU Headlines

COT technical department chair retires from ISU

Posted March 27, 2007

After 27 years of service at the Idaho State University College of Technology, Janice Matteson-Howell is retiring. She joined the College of Technology in 1974 teaching and developing curriculum as part of a consumer education grant.

Matteson-Howell is an Idaho native. She grew up in the Treasure Valley and is an Idaho State University alumna holding a bachelor’s degree in business education. She completed a Masters of Education in occupational training management with an emphasis in vocational administration in 1989. While working on her master’s degree, Matteson-Howell taught technical writing, technical speaking and job search courses. In addition, she was instrumental in developing a business principals course.

 “I always knew I would work in education. I just didn’t know what specific area,” Matteson-Howell said. “I knew I needed hands-on skills for the world of work.”

In 1989, Matteson-Howell took over the responsibilities of technical department chair overseeing programs including: civil engineering technology, computer/business equipment technology, computer software development technology, computerized machining technology, computer aided design drafting technology, electrical technician and geomatics technology. She has also supervised such programs as culinary arts and marketing, management occupations and electronics until their own departments were formed in the mid 1990s.

“I have enjoyed working with a large share of our programs,” said Matteson-Howel, “There is a variety and they are all unique.”

When asked about the main highlights of her career, Matteson-Howell reflected on her efforts to improve educational opportunities for students through the programs offered in her department. One of these accomplishments was receiving the Cisco Technical Network Training Grant providing the department with funding to provide Cisco certification and upgrade training for high school teachers. This grant also made it possible to give high school students opportunities to earn dual credits. At one time there were 10 high schools with certified Cisco instructors.

Other accomplishments include developing the first bachelor’s degree program offered at the College of Technology—which was the Bachelor of Science degree in Surveying Technology, now called geomatics technology—and the installation of the continuous operating reference stations in Pocatello and Idaho Falls. Matteson-Howell has been instrumental in helping programs receive national accreditation through the National Association of Industrial Technology and Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. Recently, she was awarded the Friend of Society Award from the Idaho Society of Professional Land Surveyors for her contributions, only one of four such awards given over the past 30 years. 

“I have enjoyed working at College of Technology,” Matteson-Howell said. “My coworkers have been very caring and concerned about their students, peers and the college as a whole. Everyone works hard adding to the success of the college."