Montevallo launches new scholarship to address teacher shortage

MONTEVALLO, Ala. (WBRC) – We are in the midst of a teacher shortage, with rural communities perhaps the hardest hit. Today, a local university is working to solve the problem.

Educators at the University of Montevallo are creating a new scholarship to give students another reason to choose to become teachers and convince them to make a difference in small, rural communities first.

To be eligible for the new Rural Recruitment Scholarship, UM students must be part of the teacher training program.

The amount they get will be determined by how long they agree to teach in a rural community. Scholarships start at $2,500 for one calendar year, before increasing to $5,000 for two years and double to $10,000 if someone signs up to teach for three years.

Educators believe that programs and scholarships like this are key to creating change in education.

“Across the country we are experiencing a shortage of teachers and Alabama is not unique to any other place and we are truly aware that this disproportionately affects these rural communities. This particular scholarship will encourage teacher candidates to go in these rural schools,” said Acting Provost of Montevallo and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Courtney Bentley. “The College of Education and Human Development is extremely grateful for these generous funds that will help us prepare highly qualified teachers to serve the students of these rural communities.”

Dr. Bentley says the teacher shortage and incentive problem is something educators across the state are working to address, and she thinks this scholarship is a step in the right direction.

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