Rice University's new program is solution for the teacher shortage

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The COVID-19 pandemic has caused many school districts to scramble to find teachers, but now there's a program to help to fill that void.

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This program is great for people who want a career change to teaching, according to Jennifer Gigliotti, the senior associate dean of Glasscock School of Continuing Studies at Rice University.

The strains of virtual and in-person learning during the pandemic can take a tremendous toll on educators, and the need for more teachers continues to grow.

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"We felt really strongly that we could offer this non-credit pathway through the Glasscock School," Gigliotti said.

Rice University hopes to help fill that void with their new program that allows students to teach inside classrooms as interns while they earn their teacher certification.

"It looks like our first cohort is purposefully small. We have eight students that are part of this group," she said.

The goal is to expand that number to 30 students in the future. Students can earn their certification in as little as one year and the program hopes to attract a variety of students.

"It captures outgoing Rice students who are looking for an affordable way to get into a classroom and are highly motivated to become a teacher," Gigliotti said.

Some admissions requirements include a bachelor's degree with official transcripts, a 2.75 or higher GPA and three letters of reference.

If you have questions, you can sign up for a virtual information session happening Wednesday at 4 p.m. The signup can be found on the Glasscock School's website.

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