Thursday, May 29, 2008

Shortage of Minority Teachers

by Alex Mazer

Ohio University has more than 1,300 undergraduate education majors and more than 600 education graduate students according to the College of Education's website. But only a small portion of those students are minorities. Only six percent of Ohio's teachers are minorities.

Nancy Robinson, a senior in the College of Education at Ohio University, says she believes this is because of the lack of mentoring programs not just for minority students but for education students as a whole.

Student teacher Nancy Robinson talks about diversity and retention problems

According to Robinson, most minority students end up transferring out of the college because they realize they can't make a lot of money as teachers. She says all students in the College of Education are required to take one diversity class. However, Robinson also says that there is not enough time to teach the education students everything they need to know about diversity in ten weeks.

Some students may not have the same drive to be a teacher as Robinson. She says she knew she wanted to be a teacher from the time she was eight years old. She says on her vacations from school she would go to work with her mom, who is also a teacher, and grade papers, decorate the room and tutor students. Teaching is her passion.

She says student teaching has made her more mature because of all the responsibility that goes along with it. She also works two jobs. Being a normal college kid is something of the past for her.

Nancy Robinson talks about how teaching has matured her.

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