Internship scholarship supports teacher education students 

Juneau, Alaska (KINY) – The Alaska College of Education Consortium (ACEC), encompassing the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA), University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF), and University of Alaska Southeast (UAS), has announced the second year of its Teacher Internship Scholarship Program

This initiative, supported by the collaborative efforts of the Alaska State Legislature, Governor, and UA President Pat Pitney, and coordinated with the assistance of ACEC Liaison Bridget Weiss, highlights the strength of unity in advancing educational opportunities across the state.

UAA School of Education Dean Tonia Dousay remarked on the impact of this program: “This opportunity ensures our teacher candidates can focus on their professional growth rather than their personal finances. It’s a game-changer for aspiring educators in Alaska.”

Now in its second successful year, the Teacher Internship Scholarship Program is designed to relieve the financial challenges faced by students during their critical full-time internships in teacher education. It reflects the commitment of the ACEC and the UA system to ensure that aspiring teachers complete their licensure programs without the burden of financial stress.

Teachers prepared through a high-quality, year-long internship-based program are three times more likely to still teach in the classroom after three years than those in fast-track or emergency licensure programs. Supporting Alaskan students in becoming teachers reduces a district’s need to incur the high cost of recruiting from outside Alaska and increases the likelihood of multiple-year retention.

Applications for priority consideration are due by April 1, 2024, with announcements of scholarship recipients scheduled for May.

“The collaborative support from across our state is vital in shaping the future of education in Alaska. Working alongside our ACEC liaison, Bridget Weiss, we are making strides in educational excellence,” said UAS Interim Dean Carlee Simon.

The Teacher Internship Scholarship is available for year-long internship programs that are central to the teacher education experience at UAA, UAF, and UAS. These programs, which are now accepting applications for summer 2024 and the 2024-2025 academic year, cover a range of certification levels and specialties.

The scholarship is open to undergraduate students in their final two years (60 credits) and graduate students in initial teaching licensure programs at any UA university. It includes full tuition support and a $10,000 living stipend during full-time internship semesters.

“This scholarship has allowed me not to work during my student teaching semesters which provides me with time to focus so much more on the classroom. I don’t know what I would’ve done without it,” said Jubilee Carroll, a BA Elementary Senior 23-24.