PEBC/Boettcher Teacher Residency program at Adams State awarded $2.9 million STEM grant


A $2.9 million grant awarded to the Public Education & Business Coalition (PEBC) will enable Adams State University's Boettcher Teacher Residency (BTR) program to serve more Colorado school districts and add a focus on training teachers for STEM (science, technology, engineering, math). The five-year grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Education's Teacher Quality Partnership Grant program.

"We are absolutely thrilled to get this grant," said Adams State President David Svaldi. "We look forward to working with our partners at PEBC to educate great STEM teachers and help the San Luis Valley and more rural Colorado schools."

The STEM grant will help train new teachers for elementary and middle schools in 15 rural Colorado school districts: Alamosa, North Conejos, Center, Monte Vista, Moffat 2, Sierra Grande, Centennial, Del Norte, Sangre de Cristo, Montezuma-Cortez, Dolores RE-2, Rocky Ford, East Otero, Crowley, and Huerfano.

It's estimated the grant will recruit, train, and support a total of 195 new rural teachers; they will have taught a total of 8,385 students annually by the conclusion of the grant. Because elementary teachers are so important in setting the stage for STEM success, the grant also supports development of a more robust curriculum.

BTR aims to serve high-needs schools and districts – both rural and urban – by recruiting, preparing, supporting, and retaining high-quality teachers. The two-year program combines master's level coursework with hands-on learning in a classroom and support from a Mentor teacher. Upon completion of the Residency, teachers receive alternative teaching licensure and a master's degree in education from Adams State. Participants make a service commitment to rural Colorado schools.

Adams State's Teacher Education Department is the sole educational partner in awarding M.A. degrees for the program throughout the state. PEBC and the Boettcher Foundation first partnered with Adams State in 2013.

Two current cohorts of graduate students enrolled in the BTR will earn an endorsement in culturally and linguistically diverse education.

Adams State provides a $100 per credit hour scholarship to all participants. The master's program entails between 39 and 48 credit hours of coursework, depending on the participant's previous coursework. They take classes on weekends and evenings, as well as in the summer.

For more information about Adams State University's Colorado Boettcher Teacher Residency program, contact Stephanie Hensley, Field Director, at 719-587-7984.

By Julie Waechter