Prepared To Teach collects and shares stories from our partner sites where aspiring educators, teachers, faculty, administrators, and others are transforming the teacher preparation landscape. Here, you’ll find accounts ofon-the-ground experiences from people who are making locally-grown teacher residencies work across the country. Read the latest updates
We revise this page regularly with more updates from our partners. If you’d like to learn more about how to share your residency story, please reach out to Gretchen Mills at email@example.com.
Real People, Real Stories
Making connections as a student teaching intern
Annika Lucke, Western Washington University student and Ferndale School District intern
Over the first few months of the residency program, I’ve benefited in many ways—but the chance to develop strong professional relationships stands out as having shaped my experience so far. Those connections have defined my time in the residency and helped me hone my skills as an educator.
The support I’ve received from my field supervisor is the kind of close, supportive relationship that other student teachers do not have the opportunity to experience in their internship year. My field supervisor has committed to being there for each and every one of her interns. With frequent visits to our schools, check-ins via email, and the class time we have with our field supervisor, I feel it’s impossible to slide under the radar and not receive help. There is a lot of responsibility that comes with a full year of student teaching, and at times it can feel like things are moving fast. At times, I question if I’m capable of handling everything, but the support of my cohort, my cooperating teacher, and my field supervisor makes me feel heard and encouraged.
I am also thankful for my strong relationship with my cooperating teacher. She has graciously invited me in as a co-teacher and shared her classroom space with me in a way that makes it feel like my own as well. My cooperating teacher and I spent a lot of time preparing the classroom before school had even started, and in this time we got to know more about each other and create a bond. Building our relationship since before students even arrived has really helped us going into the school year. I feel that we can openly talk about the areas of my practice I want to improve, I can ask for advice, we can vent to each other when needed, and we can share our personal lives as well.
I’ve grown to understand the importance building these kinds of connections with the people you work with. The teachers at my school are all a family, and they share so much of life together. This is an experience that I feel honored to be a part of. Without the opportunity that the residency program has given me, I might not have the same time and exposure to my field supervisor and cooperating teacher that I have now. I have gained so much just from the past few months and I look forward to what more is to come.
Anonymous Spending Snapshots
Four days as a teacher intern living with her fiancé in a small city
Age range: 22-25
Clinical practice time commitment: 11 hours/week. I have the opportunity to receive financial support through substitute teaching, but there are limited days I can sub this semester.
Outside job time commitment: 20 hours/week
Commute to clinical practice placement: 15 minutes, I drive.
Rent and utilities: I live with my fiancé. Rent is $925.00 before other bills. Utilities are about $100.00.
Car payment: $410.00
Credit cards: About $900.00
Phone bills: $85.00
Student loans: None.
I bought cookies for lunch from the grocery store, total cost $2.59. I also spent $23.89 on pet supplies and picked up toilet paper, laundry detergent, baking soda, corn dogs, and waffles for $58.18 at Costco.
Coffee run before teaching my first lesson: $4.89. Also pay the phone bill for my fiancé for a total of $39.00.
I was too busy to get food all day, so my fiancé brought me Panda Express at work for $17.17. I stop by Petco to pick up litter for $7.86 and refill my gas tank at Fred Meyer for $39.47. I also make a credit card payment ($123.00).
I purchase food for my fiancé and I from my coffee stand where we get a discount for $9.69. Pay for a chiropractic re-exam ($115.00).
Four Day Total: $432.88
Three days as an undergraduate student teacher in an urban area
Age range: 21 or under
Clinical practice time commitment: About 10 hours/week. I don’t receive any direct financial support from my program at this time.
Outside job time commitment: 10 hours/week
Commute to clinical practice placement: 20 minutes by car.
Rent and utilities: I live with one roommate, we each pay $600.00 in rent and utilities are about $60.00/month.
Cell phone bill: $100.00
Amazon student prime: $4.00
Student loans: I anticipate owing about $26,000.00 upon graduation.
I filled up my car’s tank for the week ($45.00) and ordered dinner in for $12.00.
Bought groceries that should last for about two weeks for $65.00. Because I try to keep spending to a bare minimum, packing a lunch saves a lot of money. You can cook one big batch of something and it’ll last for a week!
Grabbed a coffee before work for $5.00.
Three Day Total: $127.00
Weekly routine for a student teacher who's also the primary breadwinner for her family of three
Age range: 26+
Clinical practice time commitment: I am spending probably about 7-8 hours a day for 4 days, so 28-32 hours a week. As part of my clinical practice, I receive financial support in the form of a $5,000 stipend each semester. I also received a $5,250.00 scholarship and the the TEACH Grant for $3,283.
Outside job time commitment: I’m working 30 hours a week outside of my clinical practice.
Commute to clinical practice placement: My commute from my home to my clinical practice is about a mile, but then I also have to drive across town to my job which is 15 miles each way.
Rent and utilities: I own my own home and pay two mortgages which total $1,105.00 per month. My utilities are about $275.00 per month. My husband also works in education, but I am the primary breadwinner and the main source of income for our household.
Car payment: $970.12
Car insurance: $207.00
Credit cards: $100.00
Student loans: Right now I have $23,435.00 for my grad school student loans. I will probably have about $30,000.00 once I graduate.
Daily Spending Routine
I usually go to Starbucks every morning and spend about $10.00 to $20.00 on coffee, breakfast, and maybe some lunch on weekdays. I then go to work and stay until late in order to help make ends meet. I come home and then my husband, my son, and I eat out at various fast food restaurants—we spend about $30.00/night.
I also work on the weekend, so I still stop to get Starbucks and spend my usual $10.00 to $20.00 on coffee and breakfast. My husband, my son, and I have the same evening routine.
Total: About $40.00 to $50.00 per day, about $300.00 to $350.00 per week.
Four days as a full-time teacher resident
Age range: 26 and over
Clinical practice time commitment: 40+ hours each week.
Commute to clinical practice placement: About 18 minutes.
Rent and utilities: I live with my girlfriend and we pay $650.00 in rent and another $150.00 each month for utilities.
Cell phone bill: $202.00/month
Car payment: $345.00/month
Life insurance: $30.00/month
Apple Music: $14.99/month
Student loans: I’ll owe about $90,000.00 when I graduate.
I didn’t bring lunch, so I had to stop at 7/11 to grab a salad for $5.00.
I had to get an oil change for my car and an inspection. Then I found out that I needed new windshield wipers, new brakes, and rotors. I didn’t get the brakes and rotors because I don’t make that much money, so my total was $115.00.
I had class today so I stopped for dinner after at Burger King and grabbed a Whopper JR., small fry, and a drink with a coupon ($5.44).
I had a meeting and class, so I didn’t have time to go home to make dinner. I stopped and bought beef souvlaki and fries for $8.00.
Four Day Total: $133.44
Western New York Teacher Residency
Canisius College and partner schools in Buffalo, New York are working together to address teacher shortages and improve instruction. Learn more about their innovative strategies for addressing teacher shortages, rethinking student instruction, and supporting aspiring teachers.
Meet WNYTR Participants
Current 8:1:1 Resident,
Future Special Educator
Current 5th Grade Resident
Future Elementary Teacher
Current 3rd Grade Resident
Future Elementary Teacher