A WSU-R student teacher in the classroom

A well-educated, quality teacher plays a tremendous role in shaping our world. There’s no doubt; teachers change lives. Outside of the home, teachers are often the biggest factor that influences a young person’s life. Nearly every person can name a teacher that made a significant impact on their life.

Role Models

When things aren’t perfect at home, a teacher is often the next adult in a young person’s life that can get them on the path to becoming a successful adult and citizen. Teachers not only provide students with knowledge, they also serve as role models who inspire, guide, and above all, show children that there is an adult who cares about them.

It Pays to Become a Teacher in Minnesota

In addition to the rewards of shaping a young person’s life, teaching offers many other rewards, including flexibility, room for advancement, retirement packages, health insurance, and time off. According to Career Explorer, teachers in Minnesota make on average $61,570. The bottom 20% of the scale earns $40,440 and the top 20% earns $95,820.

Getting Your Teaching Degree

There are four unique teacher education programs offered by WSU-Rochester, some in Rochester and one in Austin. The Rochester Elementary Education and Austin Elementary Education programs are both full-time two year or part-time three-year programs. Students completing the program over the course of three years will take approximately 10 credits each semester; this option might be preferable to students who are juggling school with other commitments such as work and/or family.

The Elementary Education Nights & Weekend program prepares working professionals with an associate degree or higher for licensure in Elementary Education (K-6).

The Master of Science in Education (MSED) program is a full-time 13-month program for students who have already earned a Bachelor’s degree in a subject that they are interested in teaching.

The Graduate Induction Program (GIP) is open to students with a K-6 Elementary Education license and is designed to assist inexperienced teachers with challenges unique to entry into the field of education.

Rate of Return on a Four-Year Degree Investment

Sure, college isn’t free, but it is still a very good investment. According to CNN Business, as an investment, a college degree has an average rate of return of 14%, well above the long-term return benchmarks for traditional investments like stocks at 7% or bonds at 3%.

The Number with Degrees is Growing

The number of people in the workforce with college degrees is growing. Approximately 35% of people in the US now have a four-year degree according to Statista.com, and since 2013, females surpassed males as the gender most likely to have college degrees. This means competition for higher positions and higher pay is increasing.

Many adults in our workplace today have some college and now discover the benefits of finishing it out to take advantage of advanced learning and earning. Because of this, colleges like Winona State University-Rochester (WSU-R) have built out programs to better serve this sector. WSU-R Path to Purple (a path to completing your four-year degree) is really quite simple:  If you already have a collection of college-level credits from another two-year or four-year institution, you can complete your degree at WSU-Rochester. Credits earned in a previous degree (AA, AS, BA, BS) may be applied, once officially evaluated by WSU Admissions.

Because many of today’s adults are already in the workforce and many even have families, these programs are structured to accommodate non-traditional schedules with options like night classes, online classes, virtual classroom learning or a blend of all.

It’s Never Too Late to Go Back to School

It’s simply a matter of taking the first step and we are always here to help. Professional program advisors and staff are here to meet with you and provide a tour of our Rochester campus. Call 507.285.7100 or email wsurochester@winona.edu to schedule an appointment. Reach up by reaching out to us today!

Pass the Flame

Ready to learn more? Join us on at the Heintz Center on Thursday, February 27 from 5-7 PM for the “Pass the Flame” Education Open House, an evening of tacos and networking for current and future teachers. Meet with local teachers, alumni, and staff from the WSU-Rochester Teacher Education program. Together we can inspire a new generation of teachers and learners!

Get full event details and RSVP on Eventbrite

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WSU Rochester Staff