Lindsey Buckles has just completed her first semester of teaching at Bradshaw Mountain Middle School in Humboldt Unified School District, but she’s not your typical new teacher. Initially pursuing a career as an actuarial, Lindsey has now earned her teaching certificate through an online hybrid program at Rio Salado College in Tempe. The Noyce Scholar Program, a National Science Foundation initiative, provides a venue for STEM professionals, those working in science, technology, engineering or math fields, to change careers and become middle or high school math or science teachers.
"I'm not meant to be sitting behind a computer all day long. I like helping kids. This is where I feel good and where I feel comfortable," Lindsey explains. Future goals include more schooling as she works toward a master's degree. She highly recommends the online program and said she received extra support through the Rio Salado program administrators.
Karen Nave, Noyce Scholars Program manager and assessment coordinator, said each of the 15 scholars receive a $16,500 stipend, which is disbursed in seven payments throughout the 15 month teacher preparation program. For Lindsey’s program, Rio Salado College partnered with HUSD, which offered observation, field experience, and student teaching opportunities, but there are many more districts throughout Arizona with needs for certified teachers. For more details about the Noyce scholarship program, visit www.riosalado.edu/noyce or call 480-517-8066.