December 01, 2016
NEWBURGH, N.Y. -
Mount Saint Mary College has officially been named a Teacher
Opportunity Corps (TOC) higher education institution and the
college’s Teach the Change initiative has been awarded a five-year
New York State TOC grant.
Teach the Change is a comprehensive initiative of the college’s
Division of Education, coordinated in conjunction with the Center
for Adolescent Research and Development (CARD), under the
leadership of Frances Spielhagen, Mount education professor.
The initiative has three major focus areas:
- Continuing to strengthen the teaching profession in the
programs provided by the college.
- Creating a pipeline of teacher candidates from area high
schools, especially first- generation college students and those
who may be underrepresented in the teaching profession.
- Enhancing the current teaching force by providing teacher
leadership training for area educators.
Over the next five years, the Mount’s Teach the Change
initiative will receive funding of $39,000 per year to recruit,
nurture, and mentor minority and/or economically disadvantaged
candidates and prepare them to teach in at-risk school districts in
New York State. The college will match 15 percent of this amount,
using a $10,000 TD Charitable Trust grant that was awarded earlier
this year. Teach the Change will seek additional funding to support
the TOC grant as time goes on.
With TOC support, the college will sponsor six students each
year who will be official TOC candidates. Starting 2016-2017, two
Mount juniors will be involved in active internships; two
sophomores will engage in specific course work and pre-internship
seminars; and two freshmen will engage in introductory experiences.
Each year, the candidates will move up the ladder, culminating in a
student teaching experience in their senior year. Graduating
seniors will be replaced with freshmen to keep the cycle going.
The purpose of Teacher Opportunity Corps is to increase the
participation rate of historically underrepresented and
economically disadvantaged individuals in teaching careers.
“This is a prestigious honor,” said Spielhagen. “Very few
colleges have been designated Teacher Opportunity Corps
institutions. More importantly, it supports our commitment to
building a strong and diverse teaching force."
Out of the 100 schools of education in the state, approximately
12 colleges have been so designated. Other colleges include
Teachers College, Manhattan, Hunter, Medgar Evers, CUNY, SUNY
Oswego and SUNY Cortland, Nazareth, and Brooklyn College.