What does it take to be a teacher? According to Dr. Jordan Morton, dean of the education department at The Master’s University, it takes “lots of patience and hard work.” The essence of the teacher education program at The Master’s University, is to equip students to fall in love with teaching. It is understood that teachers play a huge role in the apparent success within the futures of many, giving more reason to offer students the opportunity to excel in learning, while also training them to teach.
This department uses different styles which would be considered unique to nonbelievers. Being a smaller university, TMU combines education with biblical application — creating a strong atmosphere for students to become Christlike practitioners.
Within this specific major, it is necessary for students to learn to work together. Morton claims that, “We work on bringing students together to rely on each other. It becomes a big group of everybody working to help each other out.”
Teacher Education is not just considered to be a career choice, but also a life-calling. Students who desire to move in this direction are “committed to teaching and it becomes a huge part of their lives” says Morton.
This program is required to take five years to complete, as the last year is working within the credential system. There is an application process to be placed in the credential system at TMU, which consists of writing three essays, taking prerequisite courses as well as being verified that the necessary basic skills are met along with subject matter competency. It is a one-year program, which lasts a little longer than the usual undergraduate year and 30 units must be completed.
Morton claims that the credential program, specifically, is when many students fall in love with the idea of being a teacher. This program brings students closer together and is much more “tight knit.”
“In fact, some people are in the program that are not even from Master’s, making it more rich and developed,” Morton says.
Brooke Wismer, a graduate of TMU, only has positive things to say when regarding being a part of this program. Wismer, having finished her credential, is now teaching at a private Christian school in Santa Clarita.
Wismer explains that she appreciated the program because, “We spend dedicated time learning ‘why’ we will teach the way that we do, but in the credential program, we learned more of the ‘how.’ Credential classes use the knowledge we already learned in the undergrad program and takes it further into streamlining us into real life classrooms where we get to put strategies and lessons in practice. Without this, I would have never been as confident entering the workforce as I was when leaving the program.”
When asked about placement within the teacher system, Morton states that of all the students who become a part of the credential program, “all of them” quickly find jobs.
“About 100% placement. Over the last 15 years, about 300 people have been placed locally, while even more people have gone other places. Almost 500 students total. Everyone that comes through the credential program have gotten jobs, sometimes even before it ended” Morton says.
While Morton claims students are placed in all kinds of schools, a majority of students choose “public schools, because that’s where they felt God called them to be.” Some students that come out of the teacher education program at TMU also move overseas to teach. The department has a hand in this, as well.
“We partner with a network of international Christian schools that can get visas and housing for these students. It is definitely harder because you’re giving up your home to move overseas” Morton says.
Regarding the future of the teacher education program, Morton has high hopes for its growth rate. The university is growing, and, according to Morton, more people are “starting to want to be teachers again. Classes are larger and people are excited about teaching.”