Watson Chronicle



NHCS, UNCW to Open Future Teachers Career Academy

Sunday, November 12, 2017

New Hanover County Schools and UNCW will open a Future Teachers Career Academy at Isaac Bear Early College High School in the fall of 2018. The plans were announced in a joint press release on Oct. 4.

The FTCA is a small learning community for high school student interested in a teaching career. The innovative program will provide students with opportunities to mentor, volunteer and experience education from many points of view, beginning in the first year of high school. Participants will receive early advisor support in preparing a path through high school, priority consideration for acceptance into UNCW’s Watson College of Education and priority consideration to teach in New Hanover County Schools following graduation from WCE.

“The Watson College is excited to collaborate with the New Hanover County Schools and Isaac Bear on this important work,” said Watson College Dean Van Dempsey. “We hope to inspire young people to explore the education profession as an exciting direction in their lives.”

NHCS Superintendent Dr. Tim Markley said NHCS has been creating innovative solutions to address the teacher shortage. “The Future Teachers Career Academy provides another pipeline to meet district needs,” he said.

The Watson College was host to a FTCA kick-off celebration on Dec. 4. WECT news anchor Frances Weller was a special guest at the event, designed to introduce the academy to administrators, teachers and guidance counselors at area middle schools and celebrate the teaching profession.

“There are many students who know from an early age that they want to become teachers. Through the FTCA, our goal is to guide them on a path to becoming future leaders in classrooms and schools,” said Brian Brinkley, director of WCE’s Betty Holden Stike Education Laboratory.

Brinkley has partnered with Kristin Jackson, NHCS director of student services and Mary Paul Beall, principal of Isaac Bear Early College High School, to design the FTCA, coordinating planning teams to develop career-specific enrichment experiences for students.

“The purpose of the kickoff event was to provide information about the FTCA, but we also wanted administrators and teachers to leave inspired to join us in promoting the teaching profession to eighth grade students,” Brinkley said.

The first cohort of FTCA students will begin as ninth graders at IBEC in the fall of 2018. Applications will be accepted by Isaac Bear in January.

Media Coverage of the Future Teachers Career Academy