Why teaching? Secondary school teachers play a vital role in supporting and motivating the next generation of professionals in America. Teachers are given the unique opportunity to connect with students over a subject they are passionate about, and find the building of this relationship a highly satisfying experience. These and other aspects of teaching make it an excellent career choice. There are currently very good prospects for being hired into teaching positions, particularly since a large number of teachers are reaching retirement age.
What qualities make a difference? In addition to being knowledgeable in their subjects, teachers must have the ability to inspire trust and confidence, and motivate students, as well as understand each student's unique educational and emotional needs. They must have excellent communication skills, be highly organized with an eye for detail, be able to seize the moment and take teaching opportunities as they arise, be dependable, patient and creative, and be able to assess students on the basis of performance, not on the students' personal qualities.
What are the paths to teaching? There are a variety of different paths that lead to the ultimate end of being a secondary school teacher. These paths are explored quite extensively on this website. Students interested in pursuing a teaching career while at Franklin & Marshall have two primary options: (1) to embrace the liberal arts and fine subject preparation in its entirety, therefore pursuing teacher education coursework following graduation, or (2) work to integrate teacher education coursework at Millersville University with the aim of securing the Pennsylvania Instructional I Teacher Certification in areas of secondary education.
Why teaching through the pursuit of the liberal arts? It can be argued that a commitment to a broad liberal arts background is the best content preparation for teaching and to preparing teachers for the diverse schools of the 21st century. Critical inquiry grounded in a liberal arts preparation is the foundation of learning. The liberal arts provide students with the ability to write, think critically, and solve problems. Our goal at Franklin & Marshall is to provide a solid liberal arts foundation and excellent subject preparation in the subject area of choice.