New Yakima Valley College program hopes to combat teacher shorta - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

New Yakima Valley College program hopes to combat teacher shortage

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YAKIMA, WA - Yakima Valley College has started a new program to help out with the teacher shortage. The two-year program hopes to create teachers out of locals who want to give back to the community.

30 students have signed up for the new teacher education program Yakima Valley College is offering. The purpose of the program is to help students earn their Bachelor of Applied Science degree so that they can become teachers and possibly work for schools in the area.

The program will help individuals who are new - and those who already work in the education field but are not qualified - to become teachers.

"Our teacher education program is offering a way for people to get their foot in the door into a BA program to be certified at teaching," said Dr. Melissa Matzzak, Program Director. "And in the past, maybe that wasn't an opportunity because they didn't have a certain AA degree or certain credits or the number of hours in the field, and we've eliminated those, essentially, barriers to be able to get them going into the field."

The program is new, and this is the first time the college will go through it. They hope it is a success and that it can be a solution for the teacher shortage Yakima is currently experiencing.