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Hundreds of OTC students in teacher education program

The newly accredited Associate of Arts in Teaching degree has resulted in hundreds of students coming to Ozarks Technical Community College to complete their first two years of study to prepare for a career in teaching.

This semester, there are 800 students enrolled in the program, which was accredited in 2009.

All 12 community college are offering the degree, which transfers to any state four-year university without any loss of credit.

“This statewide degree is a very unique program in the nation. Just the fact that 12 community colleges have come together and agree on one degree is remarkable,” said Linda Caldwell, department chair for the education program at OTC.

Angie Miller, coordinator of teacher education at OTC, said the large number of students in the program is due partially to the increasing number of high schools participating in the A+ program, which pays the students’ tuition and also requires the student to tutor at a local school.

“Quite often, students share that a major reason why they think they want to enter the teaching profession is due to the hours spent as a tutor at an elementary or secondary school,” she said.

Shirley Lawler, associate vice president of academic affairs, said accrediting the program has had a positive impact on attracting potential teachers.

“I love working with future teachers,” she said. “They are excellent students who have been positively influenced by a teacher in their past and now they want to give something back to younger students.”

Steve Koehler is coordinator of publications at Ozarks Technical Community College. Contact him at


College Director of Communications

Phone: 417.447.2655


Steve Koehler

Coordinator of Publications

Phone: (417) 447-2666


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