The School of Education has received an $829,584 grant from the DeWitt Wallace-Readers Digest Fund to support the Schools Peace Corps Fellows/USA Program.
The four-year grant was announced Jan. 12 in Washington, D.C., by Barbara Zartman, acting director of the Peace Corps, and Mildred Hudson, educational program officer of the DeWitt Wallace-Readers Digest Fund. It is part of a $6.7 million award to 15 universities.
The Peace Corps Fellows Program places returned Peace Corps volunteers in full-time teaching positions with public schools in urban and other areas suffering from teacher shortages, while they pursue a masters degree in education.
The program assures the U-M exceptional students with strong undergraduate degrees and a commitment to teaching, said Cecil G. Miskel, dean of the School of Education. At the same time, the program offers the Detroit Public Schools a pool of talented, often bilingual teachers with experiences in cross-cultural settings.
Currently, 16 fellows are teaching in Detroit elementary and secondary schools as permanent substitutes. Upon completion of the intensive program, they will earn a master of arts degree in education and certification as teachers in the state of Michigan.
This grant makes us confident that well be able to bring in at least a dozen students a year to help meet Detroits needs, said Jerry Dyer, fellows program coordinator. The School of Education is very pleased to contribute directly to training urban educators.
The Peace Corps Fellows Program was established in 1984 to address a shortage of math and science teachers in the New York City schools. The Detroit/U-M program was established in 1991, 30 years after President John F. Kennedy announced the idea of the Peace Corps in a speech at the U-M.