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Become CTE Teachers

The University of Wyoming is piloting a new class that encourages more Wyomingites to become career and technical education teachers. UW CTE outreach consultant and course instructor Rob Hill said CTE teacher shortages have been a persistent problem for decades. He said the median age of CTE teachers is 52, meaning that workforce could soon shrink as many begin thinking about retirement. Become CTE Teachers.

“It’s clear that all communities in Wyoming are in need of more skilled trade workers,” said Jenna Shim, interim dean of the UW College of Education.

Shim presented information on a new UW course aimed at boosting CTE teacher recruitment. The course, titled Educational Trends in Career and Technical Education, is delivered to students asynchronously online. While taking the class, students also work with mentors in their community in-person.

“In many of our communities, we live in isolation, in small towns and it’s very difficult for … a person that’s invested in their community to move,” Hill said. “So we’ve tried to create a solution where they can stay involved in their community.”

There are 22 students enrolled in the class this semester, Shim said, and the course will continue to be offered in the summer and fall. She said some students enrolled in the course come from private sectors, school districts and military backgrounds to explore a potential second career in CTE teaching.

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Some of the most popular postsecondary CTE areas of study in 2023 were business administration, welding and registered nursing.

“The purpose in creating this course is to give CTE students a taste of what a career in CTE teaching can be,” Shim said. “A lot of students in high school have a misconception about what it’s like to be a CTE teacher, all the way from what they’re paid to what their job looks like.”

Students at Sheridan College who have completed an associates degree in cybersecurity, machine tool technology, welding or diesel technology can transfer into UW’s CTE teaching program, according to the UW website. Students at other Wyoming community colleges with an associates degree are also able to transfer into the program.

Looking forward, Shim said UW is piloting compressed eight-week CTE education courses, rather than a typical, more drawn-out 16-week course. The school is considering credit for prior learning if they already have significant experience in a CTE field.

Source: Become CTE Teachers

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