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CrisD CrisD is offline
 
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any career changers out there?***
Old 06-03-2006, 06:25 AM
 
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Hi - I have been at my current job at a TV station for the past 3 years and recently the itch to teach finally surfaced enough for me to follow through on it. I took one semester so far and really enjoyed it. Now I am also taking a summer class. I'm interested in teaching elementary ed.

Just wondering if anyone out there has any advice on how to manage both the current career and getting a Masters at the same time.

Also - if anyone has any words of wisdom or advice for me, as the nerves are setting in and I continue to question my decision!

Thanks


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I did ....
Old 06-04-2006, 05:00 AM
 
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Went from business to teaching at the age of 40, single mom, two elementary aged kids (one special needs), and one super babysitter!

As far as your masters- you don't have to do it at break-neck speed. Most places give you 5 years to complete. However, due to my circumstances, I finished in14 months. The last part of it as a teacher's aide in a school with a great principal who also let me do my student teaching when I needed to. I got lucky.

As far as career choice- have you explored job opportunities where you live? Elem ed is tough since there are so many job applicants. Traditionally, special ed, and math and science (MS and HS) have had more openings.

Make sure you are prepared for when you are done. I went from $50,000 to a $13,000 aide job, and now with my masters am at a salary level of $46,000. Comparable in salary, but the demands are very different, but I also love what I'm doing. This all sounds great, but not if you can't get employment.
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MsB MsB is offline
 
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Did it too!
Old 06-17-2006, 07:48 AM
 
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In the summer of 2000, I returned to college where I enrolled in a Master's Certification program. For those wanting to teach secondary, this program would have taken a year. However, I wanted to teach elementary -- so while taking those classes for my MA I also had to "pick-up" all of the undergrad classes current BA students were taking - a total of 85 hours. I worked full-time during this period and handled everything at home because I'm a divorced parent. My son wanted to do everything, so it has been a very busy 5 years. I did my student teaching during the 1st semester of 2005-2006. I still worked (on weekends) and took vacation time the other days. When January rolled around, I substituted in 3 school districts and was subsequently hired by 1 of them for this school year.

By the way, I'm not 22 years old and able to burn the candles at both ends like I used to the first time I went to college. I graduated with my BS in Criminal Justice in 1979. I started my law enforcement career in 1980 and retired from it May 5, 2006. I begin my second this August - at the age of 49, soon to be 50.

It was sometimes difficult to manuever around my schedule to take classes, participate in practicums, do observations, etc, etc, etc, but it is doable - especially if you want it. I also knew how old I would be and worried if anyone would hire a woman my age. (I was offered 2 jobs on the same day in April in two different, wonderful school districts. I have since been offered 7 jobs (based on interviews at career fairs I had attended previously) and asked to participate in over 20 interviews. (I have to say that with all of my worries about getting a teaching position at my age, it was nice to be able to turn down interviews because I had already signed a contract.)

I am so excited to be teaching this year. I am finally going to be able to fulfill a dream I've had since a young girl. I'm going to be at a wonderful school, with just as wonderful of a principal, teachers, and other staff. I'll be in the same large district from which I graduated and from which my son will graduate in 2007.

Go for it!!! Just plan to be a little tired now and then. Good luck!!!

MsB.
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So glad I did it!
Old 06-19-2006, 09:12 AM
 
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Hello!
Best decision ever was to begin a 2nd career in teaching! Now that I am teaching, I wonder why I waited so long. I left my past career of 25 years! I now am grateful that I am an older "new" teacher mostly because of the patience this career requires. I just feel that I've gathered a lot more patience at this age than I had in my twenties. :-)
It is a tough road while completing a teaching degree. I'm single, so I was working at my past career, going to school full time, paying the mortgage payment, and all the rest. But, this accomplishment happened mostly because of the desire to want to teach children.
I discovered along with the dedication and determination that it takes to complete my degree, I needed to gather the confidence in a new career. "Jumping" out of my comfort zone took a lot of courage, but well worth it.
During my first two years, I "bumped" in to some adversities while I was getting my teaching "sea legs" in my new career. At this time, I was learning what "kind" of teacher I was, ( and I'm still learning), and what I expect from my students. All teachers have their own style, and I was just learning mine. Through the "bumping" time, I remained confident that this career was for me! :-) I kept the faith, pressed on and I've been with a district for the past seven years teaching 2nd grade.
I'm currently making another change and moving to a new district, ( closer to my hometown), and will be teaching Kindergarten! "Jumping" from one comfort zone to another keeps the brain sharp and teaching skills/effectiveness alive!
I graduated in 1997 w/ my B.S. @ the age of 54! I just completed a master's in Early Childhood this last summer.
I may be the oldest "new" teacher in these parts, but age has no relevance when it comes to encouraging, guiding, and equiping the children. Keep up the great work! You can do it!
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Old 06-22-2006, 11:02 PM
 
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Hello,
I was a tv photographer for twenty years and switched to teaching 3 years ago. I was fortunate to be hired right away, but I spent my first two years of teaching finishing credential work and getting a Master's. In hindsight, I am not sure I recommend doing it all at once. The madness factor was high. But, I lived through it and now have my Master's. It can be done. As for switching from television; you will be surprised how nicely one job segues into the next. You have a lot to offer and your kids will be facinated by what you used to do. Either way, I hope the decision you make is the one that is best for you. One good thing about spending time in another profession (especially journalism) is the strong work ethic you have probably developed. You'd be surprised how many educators don't have the kind of work ethic that is learned from having a job in the business sector. It might seem easier to you than what you have endured in your current career.

Good luck,
A well-wisher


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Jackie1995 Jackie1995 is offline
 
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Great Encouragement here!
Old 06-23-2006, 07:02 PM
 
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Enjoyed reading all your posts on this subject - you are all very encouraging!

I'm lucky to be in Florida, because the system here will hire even if I don't have a Masters degree. I'm interested in Middle School Math, being a CPA for the past 20 years, it's a pretty good fit.

I'm just really curious about the "behind the scenes" paperwork, lesson planning, etc. that I have not yet seen since working as a substitute teacher. I've heard some pretty harsh descriptions of basically not enough training and mentors who haven't the time to help out very much...I'm still asking questions, but forewarned is forearmed, grasshoppah!

Anyway, great thread!
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Flip side
Old 08-11-2006, 09:57 AM
 
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I am getting ready to change gears AFTER a 31 year career----any ideas for me? I have loved every minute of this gig but-- I've always wanted to garden---arrange books---anything where I don't have to write objectives or grade papers!!!
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Old 08-20-2006, 12:26 PM
 
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I am switching careers from registered nurse to teaching. I just started classes, and will be working as a teacher's aide this fall. I am working on my Bachelor's, so I have no advice as far as Masters. Good Luck!
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eerily similar
Old 08-26-2006, 05:44 PM
 
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WOW! I can't believe how similar our stories are. I would love to pick your brain more. I am 43 and was hired for my first job (5th grade) last week. I also spent 22 years as a news videographer. I am sure we have a ton in common, BUT you have made it through the first few years, which is my main goal. (Ok, so I'm trying to make it through the first day..!!)

I won't share too much here, but would like to hear much more. If you would like, we can exchange emails. Mine is pcampbe4@naz.edu
I look forward to hearing from you!

PC
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Old 09-03-2006, 09:52 PM
 
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Jackie,

I dont know what part of Florida you live in but you should investigate the EPI program that is now being offered by the community
college system. It is a fast track system to get "career changers" into the classroom. I was under the impression that these courses are being required for anyone who will be considered for a permanent certificate in teaching in the future.


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teacherdan teacherdan is offline
 
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Just Push Through
Old 10-19-2006, 05:51 PM
 
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While working 60 hours a week, 3 years into health care administration I took 3, 3 hour night classes a week for 2 semesters, and some heavy summer coursework. Regardless of a double major undergrad and a masters in healthcare administration I still needed college algebra and us history to be certified to teach in VA. I CLEPed out of algebra and did on online course in history. My wife and I sucked up the major time investment for work, class, and homework. This is at age 28 with no kids and a 6 week Europe trip planned in between finishing classes and starting student teaching. That Europe trip was my major carrot!

Perhaps your situation is more busy.....but it can be done if it is where your heart is pulling you.

Good luck!
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Another nurse
Old 10-21-2006, 02:52 PM
 
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I am a registered nurse who left the field b/c of a disability that made it virtually impossible to continue to lift patients. I didn't like working weekends and holidays. I also didn't like a lot of what was going on in medicine. As nurses we were looked down upon but left to hold the bag. I went back to school and got my degree and here I am 15 years later. I think that having gone into teaching later in life, my priorities were different. I am very dedicated to what I do, meaning I feel like I have no life from Sept. till June!
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Teaching in VA
Old 12-13-2006, 01:05 PM
 
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Hi TeacherDan:

I currently live in Northern VA was just curious if you went to graduate school around here. I am currently looking to get into a program and just was curious of your expereince here in VA. I have an undergrad from VA Tech, but need to take some classes at NOVA too to get into graduate school.

Please let me about your expereinces in VA, if you get a chance.
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Grad school and such
Old 12-13-2006, 01:35 PM
 
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I went to a satelite campus of Mary Baldwin University. They have satelites in Charlottesville, Roanoke, and Richmond - I don't think NOVA but you could check under professional studies at www.mbc.edu. I did not do much more research because the campus was 2 blocks from the hospital where I was working. Hope this helps!
dan
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My advice
Old 12-13-2006, 05:38 PM
 
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you probably don't want to hear it and I will probably be bashed for it - but DON'T DO IT!!!
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DogLover...
Old 02-09-2007, 07:29 AM
 
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You obviously feel pretty strongly about this, but you're not helping anyone by just yelling "don't do it!" and running away. Tell us about why you feel this way. Who are you? What is your background? Did you go into teaching as a second career, like the others here? If you did, what caused you to feel so strongly about it?

Without giving us any back story to your comments, it's pretty easy for us to discount you as just another shrill knee-jerk reactor. I'm sure most people here don't want that type of person as their coworker anyway!
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former tv photog also
Old 01-23-2008, 04:47 AM
 
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Hey there, how similar our stories sound! I also spent 20 years in television, 13 FT and 7 freelance, and am a teacher now. I bit the bullet and got my MA in two full years, and I'm glad I did--although it was extremely difficult. I also was hired right out of school, but was one of 400 apps. pulled and one of 12 called to interview for one 5th grade position in a suburban school. It was also the ONLY interview I got during the 4 months from May to August when I sent out 80 letters and resumes. The teacher market is not easy to break into.

I would like to hear more about how you're doing now.

patrick_campbell@gateschili.mon roe.edu
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