USC Upstate News

Teacher Cadet College Day At USC Upstate Highlights High School Students Interested In Becoming Teachers

03- 24- 2009

Spartanburg, S.C. - Nearly 50 high school students who are interested in becoming teachers will attend Teacher Cadet College Day at the University of South Carolina Upstate on Thursday, March 26 from 8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. in the Campus Life Center Ballroom.

These Teacher Cadets are from Landrum High School, Greer High School and Chapman High School. They are spending the spring semester being dually-enrolled at their respective high schools and USC Upstate as they explore a prospective future earning a degree in education.

“The Teacher Cadet Program is an innovative approach designed to attract talented young people to the teaching profession through a challenging introduction to teaching,” said Dr. Angela Lyon Hinton, assistant professor of education and coordinator of the USC Upstate Teacher Cadets. “The Program seeks to provide high school students insight into the nature of teaching, the problems of schooling and the critical issues affecting the quality of education in America's schools.”

The program theme for Teacher Cadet College Day is “Be the Change in Education.” Jenna Hallman, a graduate of USC Upstate and the 2009 South Carolina Teacher of the Year, will speak to the group. Additionally, the USC Upstate Teaching Fellows, a scholarship program for qualified South Carolina high school students who wish to pursue a degree in education and a career in South Carolina’s public schools following graduation from USC Upstate, will share their experiences as scholars and education majors. They will also answer questions about college life.

According to Hinton, USC Upstate has partnerships with nine high schools (six in the fall semester and three in the spring semester) that results in approximately 200 students participating in the program. The other high schools that partner with USC Upstate include Boiling Springs High School, Broome High School, J.F. Byrnes High School, Chesnee High School, Dorman High School, and Spartanburg High School.

“These 200 high school students actually spend time in classrooms and planning the curriculum. This is an excellent avenue to recruit future teachers for the Upstate, for underrepresented populations, for critical subject fields, and to promote the teaching profession,” said Hinton.

This year marks the first time that USC Upstate has offered an option for the students to have dual credit enrollment at a reduction tuition rate. Eighty-six students have opted to earn both high school credit and three-hours of college course credit for the work they are doing as Teacher Cadets.

The Teacher Cadet Program is administered by the Center for Educator Recruitment, Retention, & Advancement (CERRA), which provides leadership in identifying, attracting, placing and retaining well-qualified individuals for the teaching profession in our state. Established by the Commission on Higher Education in December 1985 and funded by the South Carolina General Assembly, CERRA was created out of a concern for the condition of South Carolina's teacher supply pool and a need for a centralized teacher recruitment effort.

Piloted in four high schools in South Carolina in 1986-87, the Teacher Cadet Program has grown to include approximately 175 South Carolina high schools serving over 2,000 academically-able high school junior and seniors annually. More than 42,000 students have participated in the Teacher Cadet program in the past 22 years. The honors-level, college credit course is taught for a minimum of one class period per day for a year or the equivalent of that amount of time in contact hours. Student eligibility requirements include a B average in college preparatory (or the equivalent) courses; five written teacher recommendations; and an essay on why the student wants to participate in the class.

For more information, contact Dr. Angela Lyon Hinton, assistant professor of education and coordinator of the USC Upstate Teacher Cadets, at (864) 503- 5520 or ahinton@uscupstate.edu.