WGU Indiana creates scholarships to address teacher shortage, 2/8/13

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News Brief - 2/8/13

WGU Indiana creates scholarships to address teacher shortage

State’s nonprofit, online university now offering scholarships specifically for math and science educators

INDIANAPOLIS — WGU Indiana has announced the creation of 10 new Mathematics and Science Educators Scholarships, an effort aimed to curb the deficiency of highly qualified math and science teachers in our state. Each valued up to $4,000 over the course of a student’s degree program, these scholarships are intended to help aspiring and current math and science educators go further by earning their degrees. WGU Indiana’s flat-rate tuition is $2,890 per six-month term, providing an opportunity for significant savings for scholarship recipients.

“The U.S. Department of Education reports that Indiana has a shortage of math and science teachers, as vacancies in those specialties are often among the hardest to fill,” WGU Indiana Chancellor Allison Barber said. “As Indiana’s eighth state university, WGU Indiana is uniquely positioned to develop highly qualified math and science educators who will stay in-state and help fill the gap that exists in our state’s educational system. These new scholarships help ensure our university is training the most qualified students, irrespective of their financial or occupational background.”

In nearly three years, WGU Indiana has grown to 3,300 students with more than 500 graduates representing every county in the state. Indiana’s nonprofit, online university has graduated more than 100 Hoosiers from its Teachers College, including several who have elected to transfer into teaching from a different career.

WGU Indiana graduate and Sellersburg native Rachel Overberg used to be a corporate travel agent before earning her bachelor’s degree in education in 2012. “Six years ago I was newly divorced, a single mom and a survivor of domestic violence,” Overberg said. “I had a full-time job in the travel industry but I noticed the industry was quickly changing. As I pondered the future of my life and the life of my child, I knew it was important that I return to college. I had a desire to teach since I was in the first grade, and it never left me. WGU Indiana’s flexibility allowed me to be a student on the go. Now I have a bachelor’s degree in teaching and my own fifth-grade classroom.”

The deadline to apply for one of the WGU Indiana Mathematics and Science Educators Scholarships is April 15, 2013. All applicants must first be admitted to WGU Indiana. For more on the new scholarships, visit indiana.wgu.edu/tuition_financial_aid/scholarships or call 877-214-7014. To learn more about all of WGU Indiana’s degree programs, visit indiana.wgu.edu.