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Emporia State Builds on Legacy of Teacher Education

Teacher showing student jobs board in a classroom

With nearly 160 years of experience training the best teachers for K-12 classrooms, Emporia State University continues to build on its legacy through continued investment in The Teachers College education programs.

“Kansas and the nation’s youth deserve quality teachers,” said Dr. Joan Brewer, interim vice provost and dean of The Teachers College at Emporia State University. “Teaching has long been a foundational profession of society — teachers make a difference in people’s lives.”

In the midst of National Educators Week, it’s appropriate to focus the spotlight on Emporia State University’s The Teachers College, which offers these teacher education programs:

  • Elementary Education for Grades K-6
  • Certification areas for Grades Pre-K through 12
    • Art
    • Spanish
    • Health
    • Music
    • Physical Education
  • Certification areas for Middle Level Education (Grades 5-8)
    • Mathematics
    • Social Sciences
    • English Language Arts
    • Science
  • Certification areas for Secondary Education (Grades 6-12)
    • Biology
    • Business
    • Chemistry
    • Earth Science
    • English
    • Mathematics
    • Physics
    • Psychology
    • Social Sciences
    • Speech + Theatre

Emporia State University’s education programs for both the elementary and secondary levels focus on immersing students into in-classroom training and providing a thorough knowledge of their content areas.

For elementary education majors, their final two semesters of college are spent in classrooms working with mentor teachers. Secondary education majors, who plan to teach in Grades 6 through 12, are majors in both The Teachers College and their subject content area.

“This model helps to ensure that those planning to teach at the middle and high school levels are well versed in the content they are preparing to teach,” said Brewer.

Sam Conrad, a junior majoring in music education with a concentration in vocal music, agrees.

“What I love most about being an education major here at Emporia State is that they really prepare us regardless of what field you’re going into,” Conrad said. “Whether it be music like myself, math, reading, science or English, they really just do a good job of making sure you’re taking all the necessary classes and you’re prepared really well.”

At a time when quality teachers are in great need in both Kansas and across the United States, Emporia State also offers alternate ways to become teachers.

“The Teachers College also offers alternate pathways for career changers to enter the teaching profession,” Brewer explained. “The Restricted Licensure program is designed for an individual who has a degree in a content area, such as physics or mathematics, to work toward initial teacher licensure while also working as a full-time teacher in an accredited Kansas school.”

“The Master’s in Elementary Education allows an individual with any bachelor’s or master’s degree to pursue initial licensure to teach elementary education,” she added.

And the university stands behind its graduates through a unique guarantee program. If a graduate of The Teachers College is not meeting the expectations of their school district, ESU faculty will provide remediation for that graduate to reach the desired level.

In addition, educators already in classrooms may use the resources of The Teachers College Resource and Outreach Center in The Teachers College. The Teachers College also is home to the National Teachers Hall of Fame, the National Memorial to Fallen Educators, and the ESU Literacy Center.

Indeed, the high quality of ESU education graduates are a key reason why so many school districts across Kansas and the United States participate in career fairs twice a year for education majors.

“As a former Hornet myself,” said Katie Revell of Russell County USD 407, “I love hiring Hornets because I know how prepared I was to go into the teaching field. Emporia State is a wonderful university that prepares its students well.”

For more information about Emporia State’s investments in education programs, see, which includes a video from Dr. Joan Brewer, interim vice provost and dean of The Teachers College.