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Dan Brown, co-director of Educators Rising, leads a workshop at UD for Delaware high school teachers, urging them to encourage their students to explore teaching careers.
With a looming national teacher shortage and
a steady decline in the number of college freshmen interested in
studying education, the profession needs to move its focus to
encouraging high school students to start thinking about a career in
Dan Brown, co-director of the nonprofit organization Educators
Rising, delivered that message to a group of high school teachers and
about 75 of their students at the University of Delaware on Nov. 5.
Brown was the keynote speaker at the daylong Success Through
Education event, a program UD has been offering for four years to help
Delaware high school students prepare for college and consider majoring
Teaching is an unbelievably exciting, never-boring, challenging job
that many people will try to talk you out of, Brown told the students
in the audience. Go into it with your eyes open and with the skills you
need. If youre prepared, its a career where you can make a real
At a workshop for the teachers, Brown urged them to help promote the
idea of careers in education among their students. Educators Rising
(formerly known at Future Educators of America and, before that, Future
Teachers of America) has been expanding and updating the services and
resources it can provide to schools, he said. In some high schools,
chapters of the organization are a student club, while in some they are
an elective class.
The goal, Brown said, is to help schools without a chapter start one and to help those with existing chapters re-energize them.
He noted that most U.S. teachers work within 20 miles of where they
went to high school themselves a statistic that was reflected in the
group at UD, most of whom raised their hands when asked if they were
teaching within that distance of their old high schools.
These home-grown teachers who know their students and their communities are an important asset to the profession, Brown said.
Move this whole section up, swapping places with the section above it.
UD student volunteers, all of them majoring in education, prepare to fan out across the room of high school students to answer their questions about college life and classes.
The teachers of the future are your students today, he told the
group. Students arent choosing teaching on their own. Its up to the
teaching profession to recruit and cultivate our own.
Thats a large part of the reason that UD started Success Through
Education, said Barry Joyce, associate professor of history, who led the
program with Hannah Kim, assistant professor of history, both in the
College of Arts and Sciences secondary teacher education program, and Carol Wong, associate professor in the School of Education.
Each fall, Delaware high school students and their teachers
participating in Success Through Education come to campus for a day,
learning about UDs admission requirements, financial aid, academic
services and possible majors, including elementary, secondary and
The same students return in the spring for additional workshops, classroom visits and campus tours.
The group this semester came from five schools districts: Indian
River, Milford, Brandywine, Red Clay Consolidated and Christina.
Students met in small informal groups with UD education students to
chat about such subjects as academic requirements and life on campus.
While their teachers attended Browns workshop to learn about
participating in Educators Rising, the students filled out sample
freshman schedules showing classes, study time and extracurricular
Many of the UD students who participated had attended the same high
school as the visiting students. That kind of match helps show the
younger students a clear path to college and an eventual career in
education, Joyce said.
We want to make sure these high school students realize that teaching is still a really good profession, he said.