Woodrow Wilson Fellows Are Great Fit for New Tech
Indiana’s educational pipeline is about to receive an infusion of new science and math teachers specially prepared for 21st-century models like New Tech. This spring, the Woodrow Wilson Indiana Teaching Fellowship Program will graduate the nation’s first cohort of Fellows and those from the University of Indianapolis will be specifically trained in project-based learning.
Woodrow Wilson Fellows are career-changers and recent graduates in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. After one year in a high-quality transition to teaching program, Fellows make a commitment to teach for at least three years in Indiana’s high-need urban and rural school districts. Soon those Fellows will begin applying for teaching licenses and full-time teaching positions in high-need schools.
“Indiana is facing a critical shortage of science and math teachers,” Jennifer Drake, director of the Woodrow Wilson Indiana Teaching Fellowship Program at the University of Indianapolis, said. “Woodrow Wilson Fellows have the content knowledge and pedagogical training necessary to promote student success and help school districts close the achievement gap.”
The University of Indianapolis program is distinguished by strong district partnerships and a project-based focus. Several of the University of Indianapolis faculty deliver course content using project-based methodologies to allow Fellows to experience and reflect on project-based learning as students. Additionally, practicing teachers in the partnering districts train Fellows to design, teach and assess project-based units on their own.
“We chose to emphasize project-based learning because our partnering districts asked that we prepare the Fellows for 21st-century schools,” Drake explained. “We chose the clinical immersion/residency model so that Fellows would be prepared quickly and thoroughly for the realities of urban teaching.”
As part of the University of Indianapolis program, Fellows will continue to receive guidance from veteran teachers, school principals and university faculty while they are teaching.
“The Woodrow Wilson Indiana Teaching Fellowship Program is committed to mentoring Fellows during their first three years of teaching. The mentoring piece consists of one-on-one coaching, as well as ongoing professional development and cohort support,” Drake explained.
In 2009, Indiana became the first state in the nation to implement the Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship Program. The University of Indianapolis is the only private school in the state chosen to host the program which is a collaborative effort between its School of Education and its College of Arts and Sciences with support from the Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning. Other institutions offering Fellowships include Ball State University, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), and Purdue University.
Following its success in Indiana, the Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship Program will expand to Michigan and Ohio next year.
For more information on the Woodrow Wilson Indiana Teaching Fellowship and recruiting new science and math teachers for your district, contact Drake at 317-791-5704 or email@example.com.
Published: March 2010