"The Education Department at MCLA gives us so many tools to become effective teachers. The hands-on pre-practicum experience has really given me a sense of assurance that I can one day lead my very own classroom. The professors are all so welcoming, and I find that they especially encourage their students to strive for their best, knowing that we will someday be in their shoes." - Stephanie Karian '11, Teaching English at the National Center of Aesthetics, Gyumri, Armenia
Educating outstanding teachers has been a core of our mission since our founding as the North Adams Normal School in 1894.
We offer you a dynamic blend of classroom excellence and practical, hands-on fieldwork. Our diverse academic programming and our balance of theory and practice equip you to be a great teacher, and to meet the needs of your students and your institution.
Our program offers teacher licensure in early childhood, elementary, middle school, and secondary education. We have a network of mentor teachers who offer you the opportunity to apply educational theories in a variety of settings. And if you want to coach, our Sport Coaching minor prepares you for the middle school, high school, college, and serious club-sport levels. We also offer graduate programs in Education.
NORTH ADAMS — Even before COVID upended the world, Clio Stearns was already thinking about the lack of support for educators.
“Teachers need support,” said Stearns, assistant professor of education at Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts. “That’s always been true.”
Two years of the pandemic have only exacerbated that need. In districts across the county, Stearns said, “teachers are dealing with this tremendous emotional and behavioral fallout from kids who have lost people, they have lost secure economic circumstances, they’ve been through this massive upheaval and trauma.”
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Before the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts was the Massachusetts
College of Liberal Arts, it was North Adams State College.
Before that, it was the State Teachers College of North Adams.
Before that, it was the North Adams Normal School.
In 2020, there is nothing normal about the way teachers are trained.
When the world turned upside down in March, MCLA professor Nicholas Stroud, like educators across the country, had to rethink how he teaches. But as the chair of the school's education department, he also had to think about what he teaches.
An experienced teacher, the current head of the Berkshire County Elementary Principals Network, and a graduate of MCLA’s Master of Education program as well as MCLA Leadership Academy, Pecor knows well that working in education can be challenging. As principal, “people come to you all the time with questions or problems,” she said. “When I was a teacher, I’d go to the principal with a problem, and to me, it was the biggest problem. As principal, people deserve for me to be present in that moment with them. I want people to feel valued.”
As attitudes and practices around education change, so must educators—and the professors who educate them. The two newest members of MCLA’s Education Department, assistant professors Maggie Clark and Clio Stearns, know this well.