Davenport University and Pontiac School District sign agreement to offer new innovative scholarship program to address teacher shortage

Davenport University and Pontiac School District just signed an agreement that will create 75 new scholarships toward urban education degrees or certificates for current students, staff, and parents within the school district. Pontiac School District is the first school system to take advantage of this new program in east Michigan, which Davenport is offering to school districts statewide.

“Pontiac School District is among the first to participate in our College of Urban Education offerings in east Michigan,” said Dr. Richard J. Pappas. “It is an honor to work with this incredible team to now create an advanced education opportunity for current and future teachers.”

The Urban Education Partner School Program, Davenport University will provide up to $12,000 in funding per individual, each academic year, toward earning a Bachelor of Science in urban STEM or up to $7,000 per academic year toward earning a Master’s in Urban Education or the Urban Education Graduate Certificate. Each scholarship will be renewable for up to four years. The aid may be applied to a variety of costs, including tuition, fees, books, meal plans and housing.

“This new partnership with Davenport will be instrumental in helping us enhance the learning of our current staff to address the unique needs of our students for the last decade,” said Kelley Williams, Pontiac School District Superintendent. “We are thrilled to work with Davenport to create scholarship opportunities for our students, staff and community to address the real teacher talent crisis our community is facing.”

“The teacher talent shortage is a major crisis for Michigan and at its heart is the growth and development of our kids as the talent that will drive our future economy,” said Pappas. “Davenport is committed to developing and supporting teachers who will not only be able to address the talent shortage our schools are experiencing but will also be well-prepared to address the unique needs of our future students to ensure their success.”

School systems interested in this program are required to sign a memorandum of understanding and work collaboratively with Davenport to encourage students, employees, and parents of the school to pursue a degree in urban education.

Each partner school district will be eligible for 75 scholarships; up to 25 for current students, up to 25 for school employees, and up to 25 for parents of students currently enrolled in the school district. Individuals are eligible for a scholarship if they have not attended Davenport University as a student in the past 12 months.

“The College of Urban Education is designed to prepare future teachers to help children succeed academically by learning strategies that meet students where they are,” said Dr. Susan Gunn, Dean of the College of Urban Education for Davenport University. “We offer bachelor, master and certificate programs in urban education to develop culturally responsive teachers and educational leaders with classroom experience and mentorship introduced on day-one of their program.”

Davenport is planning to offer this new scholarship program to 10 school systems statewide. There are already several schools in talks with the university to sign up. The scholarship program is available on a first-come-first-serve basis.  To learn more visit davenport.edu/partner-schools or send an email to urbaneducation@davenport.edu.

The College of Urban Education provides elementary and secondary teachers with deep expertise in culturally responsive teaching strategies to empower them and their students intellectually, socially, and emotionally. Learn more about the College of Urban Education by visiting davenport.edu/urban-education.

About Davenport University:

Founded in 1866, Davenport is a private, non-profit university serving students at campuses across Michigan and online. The university is committed to providing high academic quality, small class sizes, conveniently located campuses, faculty with real-world experience, and more than 60 dynamic undergraduate and graduate programs addressing in-demand careers in business, technology, health, and urban education. Learn more at www.davenport.edu.



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