Dr. Kati Settles

Who Says You Can't Go Home Again? A Narrative Inquiry of College Students Who Are Alumni of a Grow Your Own Teachers Program
School: 
Doane University
Degree: 
Ed.D.
Date/Year: 
2018
Adviser: 
Dr. Barbara Sunderman
Pages: 
205
Download: 
Abstract: 

Each year schools across the United States are feeling the teacher shortage and struggling to recruit and retain teachers. Specific recruitment needs exist in shortage areas, urban and rural settings, and in recruiting teachers for diversity. This study was a follow up with college students who are alumni of a grow your own teachers (GYOT) program called Education Academy in Meadow Lane Central Schools (MLCS) located in a suburb of a large metropolitan area in a Midwestern state. The research used a narrative inquiry approach seeking themes through stories, thoughts, ideas, and experiences. Data was collected through 9, semi-structured, individual interviews lasting 90-120 minutes each, with alumni representing college first years through seniors, attending a variety of colleges, and studying multiple areas of education. Interviews were transcribed and coded with 6 major themes and 30 total subthemes emerging in detail with supporting information included from each participant focusing on what can be learned from exploring the stories and advice of these alumni in order to inform decisions.

This research was guided by one central question: How do college education majors, who are alumni of a high school GYOT course, describe the influences and experiences that have shaped their decision to pursue a career in education and desire to return home to serve their communities? Findings included a clear understanding that adults, usually teachers, inspire students to pursue education; internships and other Education Academy activities were highly beneficial in preparing and increasing the confidence of students before they went on to college; the value of mentors for aspiring teachers as well as first year teachers; and detailed recommendations for school districts to include in a GYOT program, as well as ways to follow up and recruit alumni back to the school district.

 
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