College of Education & Human Services

Great River Teacher Corps


The Need for Rural Teacher Scholarships

The Great River Teacher Corps (GRTC) program recruits and develops highly talented teachers to work in schools in West Central Illinois. In alignment with Western Illinois University’s mission, the Great River Teacher Corps is grounded in a regional perspective. The teacher shortage in the state of Illinois is most profound in central Illinois rural school districts.  The GRTC is a student-centered undergraduate program with a service component where participants are required to participate in value-added place-based learning activities that will focus on issues in rural schools.  Administrators of the GRTC program have created partnerships with ROE’s, district superintendents, and local communities in 22 counties to ensure their participation in both recommendation of applicants and the hiring of GRTC graduates.

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20,000+

BY 2019-2020 ILLINOIS WILL NEED AN ESTIMATED 20,000-24,000 NEW EDUCATORS

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39%

FROM 2000-2015 ENROLLMENT IN TEACHER PREPARATION PROGRAMS DROPPED BY 39%

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58%

58% OF DISTRICTS IN ILLINOIS ARE CONSIDERED RURAL WHERE THE TEACHER SHORTAGE IS MOST ACUTE

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60 miles

90% OF ILLINOIS TEACHERS TEACH WITHIN 60 MILES OF THEIR HOMETOWN

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OTHER TEACHER CORPS BOAST A 92% RETENTION RATE OF THEIR GRADUATES STILL TEACHING IN RURAL SCHOOLS

 

Teacher Preparation at WIU

Founded in 1899, the Western Illinois State Normal School was established to address teacher preparation in the state’s grammar schools. Soon, the institution soon became known for its well-rounded, deeply committed graduates, a tradition that continues.

The name was changed to Western Illinois State Teachers College in 1921 and then to Western Illinois University in 1957 and the institution’s mission continually broadened to include academic majors that prepared high school teachers; the state’s earliest and most successful extension program; a multi-faceted graduate school; a liberal arts program; and, eventually, distinguished colleges. Join the tradition!

Contact Us

 Greg Montalvo
  (309) 298-1690
  GP-Montalvo@wiu.edu
22 counties included in the Great River Teacher Corps