The School of Education offers programs of study at the bachelor’s, master’s, CAGS, and doctoral degree levels. Approximately 450 undergraduates and 600 graduate students enroll each year, many of them pursuing licenses to become teachers, counselors, and administrators. Others are engaged in programs of advanced study, often while working full-time for a school or school district. SED is committed to uniting theory and practice in the field of education, a commitment reflected in a faculty that has both research and scholarly expertise.
So that graduates will not enter their professions with significant education-related debt, the School provides a variety of scholarships and awards to both undergraduate and graduate students. In addition, the Joan Dee and Boyd Dewey Book Awards Program helps students purchase their textbooks and supplies. This program is particularly gratifying as it provides students with direct assistance from alumni. Past recipients have expressed genuine gratitude, explaining:
- “It is so nice to feel supported by both BU and SED in reaching my goal to teach.”
- “My textbooks were especially expensive this semester and with this award, I was able to buy them without holding two jobs.”
- “I have very limited financial resources . . . your support reminded me that my efforts are acknowledged and valued by others.”
Continuation of this popular program depends upon continued generous support from the SED Fund, and gifts can be designated for this purpose.
Alumni Outreach and Mentoring
Perhaps the most important resource that SED possesses is its thousands of alumni across America and around the world—most involved in education and deeply committed to what education can mean for our world’s future.
The SED administration wants a highly interactive relationship with these alumni, making them an integral part of the School’s educational program. Philosopher William James wrote that teaching is an art, not a science, and the teachers (and counselors and coaches and educational leaders) whom the School is preparing cannot learn that art in SED’s classrooms alone. They need practical experience and mentoring by individuals who have already mastered the arts which they are pursuing.
Through the SED Fund, the School will create new forms of linkage so that alumni can stay involved in the life of SED. This will include events and discussions through which alumni can participate with SED faculty and students in developments in education worldwide. For example, in the spring SED held events on the black-white achievement gap, cyberethics, Muslim and other faith-based schools, No Child Left Behind, and other current issues.
The SED Fund will also provide alumni the opportunity to join in mentoring new teachers and other educators, setting an example for effective professional development in education through combining theory and experience.
Coordination of these alumni-related activities will depend upon support from the SED Fund, and gifts can be designated for this purpose.
Bringing Instruction into the 21st Century
SED was a pioneer in the use of electronic media for instruction, and the School’s faculty offers a number of courses and graduate certificates online. This year, SED will begin to incorporate the use of media, including the Internet, into every course taught at the School and greatly expand the number of courses and certificates it offers online.
Blended courses and programs that combine face-to-face and online instruction are especially appealing to SED faculty, as they allow professors to work with students directly, even if only for a few weeks during the summer, and then continue an online dialogue with them when they return to jobs around the country and the world. Online assignments, which continue classroom discussion, can also make instruction more dynamic and ensure that every student participates.
Online and partially online courses require a great deal of thoughtful planning. Enhancing the ability of SED faculty to teach in these new ways will be a priority dependent upon support from the SED Fund, and gifts can be designated for this purpose.
Making SED a Model of Environmental Responsibility
SED has striven to become a model of care for the environment through a detailed energy-expenditure audit, a new interactive exhibit powering a computer through a stationary bicycle, and a plan for a solar and wind power educational project on the School’s roof. By linking these efforts to the Science Education program, the School seeks to provide an example not only to the rest of the University but also to hundreds of schools and thousands of pupils in the Greater Boston area. Creating this model will depend upon support from the SED Fund, and gifts can be designated for this purpose.