A new $1.8 million grant will introduce the VolsTeach program to the College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Education, Health and Human Sciences. VolsTeach will reduce the five-year teacher training program in math and science to a four-year program.
Initiative is being taken to propel more needed science and math teachers into classrooms. The program will begin fall 2010 and is expected to enroll 200 students over four years. VolsTeach graduates will have a bachelor’s degree in a math and science field, a teaching certificate and experience through internships or community outreach.
The program was introduced by Bob Rider, dean of Education, Health and Human Services, and Bruce Bursten, dean of Arts and Sciences, and is funded for the next five years through the Tennessee Higher Education Commission and the Tennessee State Department of Education. The university will also provide $2 million for VolsTeach, according to a UT press release.
To encourage freshmen math and science students to consider teaching as a career choice, two one-credit education courses will be offered at no cost. Education programs, resources and networking opportunities are also part of the grant.
This four-year program emphasizes a more focused and intense path to the profession than the current five-year process, which requires students to earn a bachelor’s degree with a teacher education minor followed by teacher licensing.
“We are pleased to take the leading role in bringing this successful national model to the state of Tennessee,” Chancellor Jimmy Cheek said in a UT press release. “With our well-qualified faculty and staff, we will help solve a serious problem, not just for Tennessee, but for our nation.”