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JSU awarded $50K grant for minority teacher education

JSU awarded $50K grant for minority teacher education
Posted By: Elynor Moss on December 09, 2014

Jackson State University has been awarded $50,000 for minority teacher education by the University of Pennsylvania Center for Minority Serving Institutions (Penn CMSI) and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.

The grant will be used for “capacity building” to support two teacher education programs and to assist in the creation of a new one, said Kyle W. Bray, director of Grants, Special Projects and Community Service, College of Education and Human Development.

“We’ve got the official word from them,” but have not yet received the funds, Bray said, which will happen in the spring, along with a site visit by the funding officials.

Overall, the funding will go toward the college’s Proactively Addressing State Standards (PASS) Initiative aimed at increasing the proportion of JSU students that successfully pass the PRAXIS/CASE teacher certification examination.

The college had determined that the most pressing issue it faced was the number of students that enroll in teacher education programs, but either change to another program, or drop out entirely. A primary reason was found to be difficulty in passing the PRAXIS/CASE teacher certification examinations.

The funds will support the Call Me MISTER program ($10,000), the Interdisciplinary Teacher Education Course Lab or ITECL ($10,000), and the new program called Freshman to PhD ($30,000), Bray said.

Although the three programs operate independently, the intent of combining them under PASS is to offer multiple options to address the varying needs of students.

Call Me MISTER (Mentors Instructing Students Toward Effective Role Models) is in its third year at JSU. It was created at Clemson University to “increase the pool of available teachers from diverse cultures and backgrounds to serve economically disadvantaged and educationally at-risk communities.”

The ITECL is a lab course for elementary education majors, similar in structure to a science lab, to improve teacher preparation skills for prospective teachers. It is taught in an interdisciplinary setting by JSU faculty and K-12 public school teachers.



Freshman to PhD (FtP) is designed to provide a fast-track avenue for teacher education students to complete their bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate degrees. Having a high degree of rigor and support, its intent is to increase the available pool of minority teachers and educational administrators.

Penn CMSI supports Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs) by bringing together researchers and practitioners from historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), tribal colleges and universities, as well as Hispanic, Asian American and Native American and Pacific Islander serving institutions. Its goals include elevating the educational contributions of MSIs. ensuring that they are a part of national conversation, and bringing awareness to the vital role MSIs play in the nation’s economic development.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation, based in Battle Creek, Mich., is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. It works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.

JSU will represent the HBCU segment of minority serving institutions in the grant, Bray said.

The other institutions winning the award are Stone Child College at Box Elder, Mont., California State University-Fresno, and New Mexico State University.



– JSU –



About Jackson State University: Challenging Minds, Changing Lives

Jackson State University, founded in 1877, is a historically black, high research activity university located in Jackson, the capital city of Mississippi. Jackson State’s nurturing academic environment challenges individuals to change lives through teaching, research and service. Officially designated as Mississippi’s Urban University, Jackson State continues to enhance the state, nation and world through comprehensive economic development, health-care, technological and educational initiatives. The only public university in the Jackson metropolitan area, Jackson State is located near downtown, with five satellite locations throughout the area. For more information, visit www.jsums.edu or call 601-979-2121.



Contact:
Olivia S. Goodheart, director, public relations, 601.979.1483, olivia.s.goodheart@jsums.edu
Jim Ewing, media specialist, 601.979.2950, james.h.ewing@jsums.edu
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