Why I Hired UVEI Graduates

During my ten years as principal in area schools, the UVEI graduates I hired were all exceptional, and they enjoyed a significant competitive advantage in the application process over other teachers with less than five years of experience.  UVEI graduates stand out because:

  1. They are genuinely committed to the profession, as many have given up well-paying careers in other fields to follow their passion;
  2. They are trained in the most recent best practices and they have multiple tools in their teaching tool kit, such as backwards curriculum design, formative and summative assessment, instruction that targets varied learning style, and engaging their students in authentic work.
  3. They come with significant experience in a classroom, having spent an entire academic year as an intern, modeled by very competent mentors and supervised--in a growth relationship--with experienced and supportive faculty coaches.
  4. They are willing team players, partly because they have been taught to seek out others' expertise, partly because they have experienced well-run inquiry groups and seminar days, and partly because they were the sous chefs in two mentors' classrooms and understand how to develop a collegial relationship over a long period of time; and
  5. They are reflective practitioners, accustomed to asking the “why” questions about their own, and their colleagues, practice, and committed to continuous professional growth.

I know that my respect for graduates of UVEI is shared by other principals and that when principals begin the hiring, UVEI applicants often go in the “A” pile.

Story by Jim Nourse

Jim Nourse was the principal at Lebanon High School in Lebanon, NH, and at the Frances Richmond Middle School in Hanover, NH.  He served as UVEI's Executive Director from 1998 to 2004.  This year, Jim returned to UVEI as a Faculty Coach to teacher interns.