The North Carolina Teaching Fellows Commission recently announced it has selected 110 individuals into the new program’s inaugural class. Meredith College is one of the five colleges and universities that will welcome these future educators in Fall 2018.
The mission of the N.C. Teaching Fellows Program is to recruit, prepare and support students attending North Carolina’s top education programs for preparation as highly effective STEM or special education teachers in the state’s public schools.
Applicants were evaluated on the following measures: GPA, standardized test scores, leadership and experience, a written essay and mission statement, and for those moved forward as a semi-finalist, an in-person interview.
“The Education Department and Meredith College are looking forward to welcoming first-year students interested in STEM and Special Education who have been awarded the NC Teaching Fellows Scholarship. We are pleased that some of our current Meredith students have also been selected as they pursue STEM and Special Education licensure,” said Jennifer Olson, head of Meredith’s Department of Education and a member of the N.C. Teaching Fellows Commission. “We are also excited to have Masters of Arts in Teaching students enroll in our Special Education program.”
In addition to the new N.C. Teaching Fellows program, Meredith will maintain its own Teaching Fellows Program. The Meredith program offers a dynamic educational experience enriched with opportunities to gain hands-on classroom experience, learn from education professionals, participate in study abroad, and enroll in honors courses.
“These new avenues for access to the N.C. Teaching Fellows Program will enhance our current Meredith College Teaching Fellows Program,” Olson said. “Dr. Heather Bower, our Director of Teaching Fellows, will be working with both newly awarded N.C. Teaching Fellows students and our own Meredith College Teaching Fellows.”
N.C. Fellows will receive up to $8,250 per year in forgivable loans if they commit to teach in a STEM or a special education area. The program is specifically designed to attract high-quality teachers to low-performing schools by offering an accelerated loan forgiveness schedule for Teaching Fellows who agree to teach in a low-performing school in North Carolina.
“This first North Carolina Teaching Fellows class represents the best and brightest prospective teachers our state has to offer,” said Dean Mary Ann Danowitz of N.C. State, the commission’s chairperson. “I congratulate each of them on this prestigious accomplishment, and am excited and optimistic about what they will bring to our students and classrooms in the future.”
The Commission is comprised of four deans from educator preparation programs, teachers, principals, a member from business and industry and a local school board member. The N.C. Teacher of the Year, Principal of the Year, Superintendent of the Year, Chair of the State Education Assistance Authority (SEAA) Board of Directors and Director of the Teaching Fellows Program all serve as ex-officio members of the Commission.