Gloria Weber – UFTeach Master Teacher
Gloria Weber is a UFTeach mathematics Master teacher who has taught Step 1, Step 2, Classroom Interactions and Apprenticeship teaching. Mrs. Weber began her career teaching fifth and sixth grade in New Jersey.
Sarah Saavedra – UFTeach Program
Sarah Saavedra was a liberal arts and science biology major that just graduated in December of 2011. She began the UFTeach program her first semester here in 2008 when the program was founded.
UFTeach is designed to dramatically strengthen the recruitment and retention of middle and high school mathematics and science teachers, a critical workforce need in Florida and across the nation. The Florida Department of Education estimates that fewer than 10% of mathematics and science teacher vacancies are filled by current teacher education efforts. Throughout Florida, fewer than 20% of mathematics and science teachers are fully certified in the subjects they teach.
The University of Florida has undertaken an unprecedented effort in Florida to bolster STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) educator development that will not only supply highly qualified new teachers, but also support new teachers of these subjects through their induction years. Qualified and effective secondary science and mathematics teachers are essential to preparing middle and high school students for successful postsecondary education. A workforce literate in science and mathematics is absolutely critical to Florida’s future.
The primary goal of UFTeach is to increase the quantity and quality of secondary mathematics and science teachers. This mission will be accomplished through new partnerships between the University of Florida’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, College of Education, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, College of Engineering, and several Florida school districts. UFTeach will use imaginative recruiting strategies to bring UF’s best and brightest into teaching.
UFTeach is an innovative initiative based on the successful UTeach model at the University of Texas-Austin. The program at UF is a semi-finalist in the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI)/ ExxonMobil competition to replicate UTeach. A grant of up to $2.4 million for the replication of UTeach, along with the generosity of private donors, is allowing UF to initiate and sustain UFTeach.
UFTeach recently received STEMflorida‘s Best Practices Award for excellence and accountability in targeted STEM teacher recruitment and retention efforts. STEMflorida is a business-led statewide council created in 2009 by Workforce Florida, the state’s workforce policy and oversight board.
- Early and intensive field experiences in real classrooms
- Deep-level understanding of mathematics and science content
- Deep-level understanding of methods of effectively teaching mathematics and science content
- Compact degree plan that allows most students to complete degree and certification in four years
- Leveraging public and private funds
- Creation of undergraduate minors focusing on mathematics teaching and science teaching
- Creation of an unprecedented discipline-specific induction support system for new teachers
The primary goal of UFTeach is to increase the quantity and quality of secondary mathematics and science teachers. This mission will be accomplished through new partnerships between the University of Florida’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the College of Education, the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the College of Engineering, and several Florida school districts.
Have you considered teaching?
- UFTeach minor for undergraduate STEM majors (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) is an alternative certification program, officially recognized by the State of Florida as a Professional Training Option (PTO) for Content Majors.
- One year non-thesis Master’s degree for students holding a BS or BA in a STEM major.
“UFTeach is a major step towards transforming this university through a well-considered, comprehensive approach that will meet the challenge of providing a world class mathematics and science education for all.”
- Dr. Alan Dorsey, Professor of Physics and Associate Dean of College of Liberal Arts and Sciences