This week is Teacher Appreciation Week. As we take time to thank all of our teachers, Shelie Wells, Field Placement Coordinator and Interim Director of Education Programs, shares some insights on how Anna Maria is preparing the next generation of educators.

What’s the number one motivation you see among students studying to be teachers? 

The desire to make a difference is often the motivation for students to pursue a career in teaching.  Teachers create a safe and engaging learning environment for all students to learn and grow.  Without teachers, would there be any other professions?

What pathways does Anna Maria offer students considering careers as educators?  

Anna Maria College offers licensure programs at the undergraduate and graduate level.  Program completers are eligible for an initial teaching license in their selected program. Undergraduate programs include Early Childhood Education and Elementary Education. We also offer the ECE and ELE licensure programs along with a Moderate Disabilities licensure program at the graduate level.

Describe the field placement aspect of the curriculum….

Students complete two pre-practicum experiences prior to a full practicum experience.  Placements are made in schools local to Anna Maria College with the flexibility of placements for students who are a Teacher of Record. The Field Placement Coordinator discusses the location interest and grade level with each student prior to selecting a placement with one of our fabulous partner schools.

Talk about changes taking place in the profession and the job opportunities.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that education professions will grow 7 percent from 2021 to 2031; this increase is expected to result in about 658,200 new jobs over the decade and this is in addition to the 929,900 openings each year, on average, from growth and replacement needs. Across the nation, schools are struggling to find qualified teachers for their students.  We often receive job postings and are asked to share them with our students who may be qualified and interested in applying. Students who graduate from the Anna Maria College Education Program are well respected and highly sought after.

If a student is considering teaching but is still undecided, what should they do? 

Reach out to the AMC Education Department for additional information. We welcome guests to sit in on a class, speak with one of our current students or speak to a member of our faculty. If possible, seeking ways to spend time in a classroom or speak with a local teacher for more information is also a wonderful way to get a sense of what teaching is all about.