Coursework for the California program is completed at Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA), a vibrant community center for young people in the Rampart District, a few blocks west of downtown. Our presence in Central Los Angeles and our partnership with HOLA provide graduate students with a unique opportunity to extend the liberal arts and sciences in a community that is creatively addressing enduring economic, ecological, and educational challenges. Our collaborative work in this setting has national implications for educational policy and practice. The Bard MAT program at HOLA is the only degree-granting teacher preparation program in the L.A. Promise Zone, one of three urban neighborhoods designated by President Obama for targeted anti-poverty initiatives and longitudinal study through 2024.
MAT candidates are expected to participate fully in the intellectual life of the HOLA community the throughout Summer and Fall quarters, complete coursework while developing mastery in their disciplinary fields, and work closely with adolescent learners in community settings before moving into extended Winter and Spring teaching apprenticeships. Candidates can select either urban or rural pathways, remaining in Los Angeles or moving into internships in the agricultural Central Valley near Tulare.
Both pathways are characterized by close mentoring from faculty scholars, support from MAT classmates, and extensive work with youth in high-need schools.
The Bard MAT program is committed to credentialing teachers who posses and value the same broad-minded, liberal arts education their own students deserve. Unique to teacher education programs, Bard requires four courses in in the candidate’s chosen discipline as well as the completion of an original academic research project. Candidates also complete field research and coursework designed to explore pedagogical questions associated with these disciplines, adolescent identity, and the challenges of literacy within the context of urban schools.
Bard College has a strong track record of expanding educational opportunities to students in under-resourced communities. Central to this effort is an institutional commitment to identifying and preparing promising teachers, from diverse backgrounds, to work in these settings. To this end, MAT candidates can look to the Financial Aid office for broad-based support. In addition to tuition scholarships, federal debt-forgiveness programs, and educational loans, candidates who make specific commitments to teaching in a federally designated high needs public schools are eligible for up to $30,000 in living stipends through a Teacher Quality Partnership Grant, awarded to Bard by the U.S. Department of Education Office of Innovation and Improvement.
A more detailed profile of our California program can be found here. We are accepting applications for the 2014-2015 school year on a rolling basis. Please direct any questions about the Bard MAT California Residency Program to firstname.lastname@example.org.