Posted: October 14, 1999
A longtime physical therapist, a banker and a state Department of Forestry employee are among two dozen people now studying to be teachers in a new evening credential program at California State University, Sacramento.
The program allows students to continue working in their current jobs while pursuing a teaching credential. For most, the career move wouldn't have been financially possible if they had to take traditional daytime classes.
"We specifically designed this for people who are working full time, and from the response we've received it appears there is demand for such a program," says Jan Cross, the University's teaching credential program coordinator.
About half the students in the program are making significant career changes. The other half are currently working with children in preschools, private schools or other positions that do not require credentials.
Plans call for enrolling a new group of about two dozen students in the program every semester.
The evening credential takes four terms to complete, including one summer session. Because student-teaching requires working in classrooms during the day, students will have to make adjustments to their current jobs the final semester.
Even so, the program provides the flexibility and low cost that allow working professionals to move into the classroom. It is expected to be an important part of the University's effort to help meet a growing need for new teachers in the state.
CSUS has been committed to teacher education since its founding, and is typically one of the state's largest credential-granting institutions.
Last semester CSUS began offering an evening and weekend liberal studies program, easing access to a degree typically sought by undergraduates planning to pursue a teaching credential. In addition, the University has begun offering year-round classes for credential students and has increased enrollment in programs that allow students to earn credentials at off-campus sites or while working as interns in schools.
More information is available by contacting the teacher credentials office at 278-6403. Information about the liberal studies evening and weekend program is available at 278-6342.
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