Q&A #1039

Teachers' Lounge Discussion: Changing career from engineer to teacher

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From: Minnesota Madness

To: Teacher2Teacher Public Discussion
Date: 2004112219:17:38
Subject: Yet another engineer cum teacher

Hi folks, I though I would chime in as I seem to fit the description here - I am an early-mid career changer with an M.S. in chemical engineering and 4 years of professional experience. I'd love to teach AP-track math, as I was taught it by my favorite teacher. I realize I might not find this exact position for some time but teaching in general interests me. I know I would enjoy it - I love tutoring math and working with kids, and I have what I feel are some realistic views of classroom management. Of course the pay cut is hard to stomach but, well, you only go around once and I think it might be worth it in my case. Plus 4-5X current vacation time and a nice predictable schedule wouldn't be so bad! Here in Minnesota it is a bit of pain to make the transition - you must slide through the square hole or be cut to fit. This for me means two years of evening courses to get a license and a teaching job I could think of supporting my family with. The governor has been making noises about simplifying the process for folks like me, but I doubt change will come in time to make me a teacher next year as opposed to three years from now. I believe that my experiences in industry and other areas of my life after school have been valuable in terms of what I can bring to the students. And nothing is a better diversity teacher than being in a diverse classroom of obvious equals like I was in engineering graduate school. If I was back in my hometown in Tennessee i could probably start next semester :-) Any advice I would appreciate it - as I said I probably want to teach at least some of the college-track and gifted courses that are hard to get as an entry level guy.

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