Madison Rogers landed her dream job just a couple months after graduating from Vincennes University.
She’s teaching third grade at Tecumseh-Harrison Elementary School located a few blocks away from VU’s main campus.
“I’m so glad that I found a job I love. My dream has always been to teach second or third grade. The old saying is if you find a job you love, you’ll never work a day in your life, and that’s how I feel.
“I love third grade. I love the way their minds work. I love watching their growth. I love seeing them light up when they understand something.”
Growing up in a family with a long line of teachers, Madison loved to play school when she was younger. Her dolls were her students.
What was once playtime is now her reality. Madison graduated from VU in May 2018 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Special Education, Mild Intervention and Elementary Education. It’s a distinctive dual licensure program designed to prepare VU students to teach in both elementary and special education classrooms for grades kindergarten through sixth.
“I’m so thankful to VU that they offer the dual program. I knew all along that I wanted to teach in a general education classroom, but having that background (in special education) has really prepared me.”
It took Madison only three years to earn her bachelor’s and associate degrees. Carrying over college credit from high school, she received her associate degree in elementary education in a year.
Not only did she received two degrees in just three years, Madison also graduated debt free as a recipient of VU’s prestigious Dorothy M. Walters Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded to VU students who are aiming for a career in education. It provides help with tuition, fees, room, board and books for two years. Upon completion of an associate degree, students receive a scholarship for two additional years at VU or another baccalaureate institution.
Attracted by the opportunity to spend substantial time in the field, Utt jumped at the chance to earn a VU bachelor’s degree. She was hooked by the immersive atmosphere and hands-on training it provided beyond the traditional student teaching experience.
“The biggest part of what the bachelor’s program offered is in almost every class we had to do at least 10 hours in a classroom. So we brought all that information back. I observed kindergarten, second grade, third grade and fourth grade - all before I even student taught.”
Interacting with students and teachers in the field is a common theme throughout VU’s education degree programs. Madison fully embraced the suggestion that education majors gain experience by substitute teaching, allowing them to earn money as well.
“There are no Friday classes so VU encouraged us to go in to schools and substitute teach. I loved substitute teaching. I loved being able to get used to schools and I loved being able to bring my information back to VU and ask my college professors questions like, “What should I have done in this situation?” or “What would you do in this situation?”
Madison feels incredibly comfortable and confident in her classroom because of the well-rounded education she received.
“I’m forever grateful to Vincennes University.”