UM-Flint's Student Success Center has established a formal partnership with the new Center for Educator Preparation to better facilitate student recruitment, achievement, graduation, and placement for all teacher candidates at the University of Michigan-Flint. It is a move that is being hailed as a national model and best practice for teacher preparation.
The partnership is the first of its kind for the university and highlights the shared commitment to student success that is embedded in the UM-Flint mission and strategic plan.
"What is at the heart of this is a true and genuine commitment to put our students first," said Ami Moss, Student Success Center director. She added that, "SEHS Dean Robert Barnett (School of Education and Human Services), Interim CAS Dean Albert Price (College of Arts and Sciences), and I are on the exact same page when it comes to the success of our students and alumni. We understand the imperative of supporting, graduating, and employing the most prepared, committed, and dynamic teachers. This collaboration will enhance and strengthen our abilities to do just that."
The Center for Educator Preparation, a joint venture between CAS and SEHS, will provide highly coordinated admission, advising, place-based field work, and career development for P-12 teacher candidates. Faculty, staff, and K-12 teachers will collaborate in the center and provide a single physical space for students from the time they enter UM-Flint until they are placed in career positions. It is located in Room 410 in French Hall.
Barnett has great hopes for the collaboration, "Ami and her team have done a spectacular job of streamlining how we assist our students all the way through their degree programs, and has played a significant role in increasing the persistence and graduation rates of our UM-Flint students. This partnership is significant because it will provide a model for first-class service to our students, and will contribute to the shared responsibility of educating future teachers and educators."
Price added, "The development of the partnership of the Center for Educator Preparation and the Student Success Center is of tremendous benefit to students enrolled at UM-Flint. The center is a tangible manifestation of the cooperative work of both SEHS and CAS to benefit teacher candidates within the Education unit at UM-Flint. With this partnership, the Education unit at UM-Flint is moving to the national forefront of best practices for teacher preparation. This development will benefit our students and the children that they will educate far into the future."
The director of the center is Sherryl McLaughlin, who previously served as the assistant superintendent of special education at Eaton Regional Education Service Agency in Charlotte, Michigan and is a former director of special education for Lapeer Community Schools. McLaughlin and Dean Barnett recently toured the new facility, which is nearing completion and is expected to be in full operation for students by mid-October.
Barnett, in making the announcement of the new director said, "Sherryl comes to us with an extraordinary amount of expertise in P-12 education, as well as a deep understanding of its connection to higher education, state legislation, and Michigan Department of Education policies. We are fortunate to have a seasoned veteran helping us set a new bar for teacher education in the state, region, and beyond."
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