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ASU empowers young people who commit to a career of teaching

As schools struggle to hire teachers, ASU reaches out to future educators.
June 22, 2017

Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College a sponsor of Educators Rising event in Phoenix

As many schools in Arizona are struggling to hire enough teachers this summer, Arizona State University is reaching out to support hundreds of high school students who want to be educators.

The Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College at ASU is a sponsor of the Educators Rising National Conference, a gathering of hundreds of young people and professional teachers. The event will be held at the Phoenix Convention Center on Friday through Monday. Educators Rising is a nationwide program that provides support and training to future and current teachers.

ASU faculty, staff, students and alumni will talk about teaching and give practical advice on affording college. On Sunday night, the teachers college will hold a huge dance party for the teens at the Tempe campus, according to Karina Cuamea, assistant director of undergraduate recruitment for the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College.

“We stress to them that this is the most important profession you can do, and we make them feel empowered by that,” she said. “We tell them that we’re here to support them, and that teaching is a leadership position and an innovative profession.”

Carol Basile, dean of the Teachers College, will give opening remarks at the conference on Friday, and the keynote speaker on Saturday is Daniela Robles, an alumna of the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College and the director of teaching and learning in the Balsz School District in Phoenix.

Moesha Crawford, a student ambassador for the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, will talk to future teachers at the Educators Rising National Conference in Phoenix.

 Teaching has been in the spotlight in Arizona for the past few years as many have left the profession and schools deal with hiring problems.

In May, the Morrison Institute for Public Policy at ASU released a report that highlighted some of the issues: Forty-two percent of Arizona teachers hired in 2013 were no longer teaching in an Arizona public school by 2016, and, when adjusted for statewide cost-of-living, elementary school teacher pay is the lowest in the nation.

In one of the most alarming findings, the report said that Arizona is losing more teachers each year than it is producing from its three state universities.

That’s why it’s important to recognize teenagers who have already decided to make that leap, according to Cuamea.

“When they say, ‘We want to change the world,’ we will help them with that,” she said.

At one conference panel, students will learn how the Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College provides hands-on training for teacher candidates through iTeachAZ, its innovative program that places college students in a classroom with a mentor teacher for a full academic year.

Moesha Crawford, a junior at ASU, will participate in a panel called “What to Expect When You’re Becoming a Teacher.” She’s an ambassador for the teachers college and was part of Educators Rising when she was a student at Washington High School in Phoenix.

“It’s a great network for students so they can understand that there are other people like them,” said Crawford, who has wanted to be a teacher since she was a child.

“I used to play school with my siblings and draw on the TV with dry-erase markers,” she said.

“In sixth grade, I had a teacher who actually believed in me, and that changed my perspective on everything.”

Click here for details on the conference.

Mary Beth Faller

reporter , ASU Now


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Remembering Sun Devil legend Frank Kush

June 22, 2017

Winningest coach in ASU football history died Thursday at age 88, hailed as the man who built the university into national power

Editor's note: This story is being highlighted in ASU Now's year in review. To read more top stories from 2017, click here.

Frank Kush, Arizona State University and College Football Hall of Fame inductee and the winningest coach in Sun Devil football history, died Thursday at age 88. Kush was a part of the ASU family since 1955 and served in many roles over the years, most recently as an ambassador for Sun Devil Athletics.

ASU Coach
Frank Kush

"Coach Kush built ASU into a national football power,” ASU President Michael M. Crow said. "He taught us how to make football work, and he put ASU on the map long before it was a full-scale university. Throughout his life he maintained his strong connection to ASU, working with coaches and devoting time to the football program. By growing ASU football he helped us build the whole university into what it is today. He will be sorely missed.”

Kush started his career at ASU in 1955 as an assistant under former head coach Dan Devine. Three seasons later, on Dec. 22, 1957, Kush became the 15th football coach in Arizona State history.

Kush went on to win 176 games — the most in school history — across 21.5 seasons and was elected into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1995. He led his team to seven Western Athletic Conference Championships and guided the Sun Devils to winning seasons in 19 of his 22 years. The Hall of Famer also holds the ASU football record for most postseason victories.

“Frank Kush is Sun Devil football,” said ASU Vice President for University Athletics Ray Anderson. “… Today, he and his family are in our hearts."

Read the full story about Kush and his impact on the university on the Sun Devil Athletics site here.


In the players' words

In October 2011, Kush and players from his 1958–1979 teams gathered at ASU for the Legends Luncheon. Watch the memories and hear what players had to say about their coach.


What's in a name?

In the late 1950s, efforts were afoot to change Arizona State College's name to Arizona State University. There were strong feelings on both sides.

Kush was among those who played a key role in drumming up support for the "university" change. Hear Kush and others speak about what it was like during that time.