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First-of-its-kind program prepares new teachers for 21st-century teaching

By author profile photo Dan Keedy

Michigan Virtual kicks off the inaugural iEducator 21st Century Digital Learning Corps this month, training 14 recent education graduates in the art of online teaching. The iEducator Corps employs recent graduates of Michigan’s teacher preparation programs who are ready to jump-start their career with a paid, two-year digital learning assignment.

A core goal of Michigan Virtual is to grow its professional competencies as well as those of Michigan school districts and professional organizations through targeted professional development and impactful research. Through the iEducator Corps, Michigan Virtual provides new teachers with an opportunity to learn from veteran teachers and receive professional development in online and blended learning.

Michigan Virtual believes more can be done to help the K-12 community improve student achievement and teacher understanding regarding the use of online learning. Michigan Virtual’s innovative iEducator program employs new Michigan teachers, addresses growth needs and strengthens their skills to benefit local schools. The iEducator program is designed to be a career and life-changing experience, similar to the Peace Corps, a combination of service, work experience, training and resume building.

“The iEducator program is the first of its kind in the nation,” said Jamey Fitzpatrick, President & CEO of Michigan Virtual. “We have an exciting opportunity to further support and mentor talented individuals who represent the future of Michigan’s teaching profession in public education.”

Michigan Virtual’s 14 inaugural iEducators will benefit from:

  • Extensive professional development in online and blended learning
  • Attendance and presentation opportunities at leading edge state and national conferences
  • Mentoring by an experienced MV educator
  • A track record of 21st-century teaching experience

Most importantly, upon completion of the two-year program, iEducators will become experts in online and blended learning and position themselves for many different career options in public education.

The iEducators from eight Michigan colleges and universities are committed to making a difference in education and transforming their skills as a 21st-century educator. The 2015-17 iEducators are:

  • Deborah Brewbaker – Michigan State University
  • Adam Knapp – Central Michigan University
  • Rachel Bergy – Grand Valley State University
  • Heather Holland – Grand Valley State University
  • Stephanie Pearsall – Saginaw Valley State University
  • Stephen Atwood – Northern Michigan University
  • Lauren Nick – Grand Valley State University
  • Melissa Shepard – Calvin College
  • Ryan Ganzevoort – Grand Valley State University
  • Rebecca Imthurn – Michigan State University
  • Brian Litten – Central Michigan University
  • Brett McCarrey – Central Michigan University
  • Kimberly Garvison – Western Michigan University
  • Amy Smith – Hope College

About MV

Michigan Virtual is a private, nonprofit Michigan corporation established by the State of Michigan in 1998 to serve as a champion for online learning. It is the parent organization of the Michigan Virtual for Students and Michigan Virtual Learning Research Institute.

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