About 20% of Whitman students pursue education professions upon graduation even though there is no Education major, minor or concentration. In fact, Whitman students interested in an education profession have many opportunities to prepare for their career while at Whitman.
Are you a Whitman student interested in pursuing an education profession?
It is never too early to start your journey.
- Contact one of the Education Advisers: Nate Boland (Chemistry), Barbara Hoffman (Off-Campus Studies), Erin Pahlke (Psychology), Susan Prudente (Student Engagement Center).
- Erin Pahlke, Education Advisor and Associate Professor of Psychology (firstname.lastname@example.org) is the contact for the listserv.
- Follow the links below to learn about steps you can take:
Want to learn more about how Whitman helps students learn more about education professions?
Here are some examples:
Pre-K and K-12 Teaching and Administration: Many Whitman students are interested in Pre-K and K-12 classroom teaching or administration. These students may do well to volunteer in a number of available opportunities: the America Reads/America Counts program, serving as a classroom assistant, working at a local preschool, or mentoring local students one-on-one or in group settings. Learn more by following the “While at Whitman” link above.
Higher Education: Every day at Whitman is an experience in higher education, but Whitman offers a number of courses and work in campus settings that interrogate current issues, controversies, and strategies in higher education communities in a more explicit way. And this experience is not reserved just for those students who want to be future professors. Learn more by following the “While at Whitman” link above.
Educational Policy: Students interested in educational policy may work with the Education Advisors or the Student Engagement Center to connect with local teachers and spend time in local/regional classrooms to get a feel for how governmental policies have on-the-ground impacts on students, teachers, and administrators. These students may find and Off-Campus Studies program or find an internship with a governmental agency devoted to education through the Student Engagement Center. Learn more by following the “Expand Your Horizons” link above.
Grassroots, Social Movements, and Social Justice Work: Grassroots work on alternatives to traditional schools also intrigues Whitman students, including every step from applying for legal recognition to recruiting teachers and students. In the past students have coordinated with school funding campaigns and performed outreach to disadvantaged communities.
Educational Research and Analysis: Students interested in social science research on student learning, the achievement gap, teacher preparedness, nutrition in school lunches, and other issues that require systematic data gathering/analysis have the opportunity to work with professors on community-based projects. This research often serves as students’ senior theses. Learn more by following the “While at Whitman” link above.
Curriculum, Learning, and Pedagogy: Whitman students have designed curricula that are used in local schools and other education organizations. Whether by working with an afterschool program to teach students another language, enhancing a local arts curriculum, figuring out a new way to meet the needs of local students with special learning needs, or shadowing a teacher who is implementing a new district-wide curriculum, students get first-hand experience with the tools used to foster learning.
Non-Classroom/Co-Curricular Experiences: Students who think of themselves as invested in education beyond the classroom - in athletics, camps, co-curricular programs, and non-profits - can find volunteer during the semester or summer jobs through the Student Engagement Center. Learn more by following the “Expand Your Horizons” link above.
Giving Back to the Community: Many Whitman students with no plans to pursue an education profession still dedicate time and energy to volunteering in local schools and other organizations to positively impact the community through Whitman’s extensive connections with the Walla Walla Public Schools.
The Student Engagement Center has more information for Whitman students on the Education Careers page