On Thursday, March 23, Dr. Rick Ramirez started the “Interested In Becoming a Teacher” seminar by encouraging all people in attendance to further their education.
“For those that are looking at teaching, it’s never too early to look beyond your bachelor’s degree,” he said on March 23.
Ramirez, an active member of the mentoring initiative, has taught Human Career Development courses for 17 years at American River College.
Ramirez also introduced two different Sacramento State representatives and one UC Davis representative.
Kristen Anderegg, the Lead Advisor of the Liberal Studies Program for Sacramento State, and the K-8 and Special Education specialist went over the path to becoming a teacher in both of those fields.
Anderegg emphasized how instrumental having a degree in Liberal Studies is when a student is on course to becoming an instructor.
“In California there is no such thing as an elementary teaching degree,” Anderegg said “This is the whole BA and you get to complete more than half of it here at ARC.”
Anderegg then informed the audience that, without a Liberal Studies degree, individuals will have to take an eight hour and $300 California Subject Examinations for Teachers exam in order to receive their credential.
“You deserve not to take that test after you do all of those classes,” Anderegg said.
An Elementary Teaching Education degree is a different route available to those who want to embark on the path of being an instructor but whose major is not funded by financial aid, Anderegg explained.
Karina Figueroa-Ramirez, the Equity Coordinator at Sacramento State explained how vital it is for teachers to teach their students.
“You’re not, as a teacher, teaching the subject, you are teaching the students,” Figueroa-Ramirez said.
Figueroa-Ramirez stressed how ahead of the competition bilingual teachers may become with a Bilingual Authorization, which grants them the ability to teach both ELA and ELD courses in a bilingual setting.
To successfully complete the program, students must maintain a 2.67 GPA and have at least 45 hours of community service experience with K-12 students.
Although the course is time consuming, Figueroa-Ramirez reassured the audience.
“Hang in there, we”ll support you through the way,” Figuera-Ramirez said after showing information that the average student GPA when they finish the program is a 3.8.
Jana Royal, the Credential Analyst and Program Coordinator at UC Davis, chimed in when it came to the topic of making progress in the teaching field.
“Look at the benefits, look at everything, look at how quick you could move up in the pay scale,” Royal said.
Royal explained that due to the increasing number of students entering the K-12 school system, it is a optimum time to join the teaching force.
UC Davis, unlike Sacramento State, uses the Cohort model, which means that once students complete their credential program they will have a guaranteed spot at a teaching institution.
The four main principles of the credential program that UC Davis instills in its students is collaboration, advocacy, inquiry and reflection.
“We have to make mistakes to learn,” Royal said, “We want you to impact the world.”