Saint Martin’s offers info sessions for professionals interested in becoming teachers

February 4, 2014

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LACEY, Wash. — Saint Martin’s University is hosting several information sessions for prospective students interested in pursuing an accelerated teaching certificate for middle and high school through the Secondary Teacher Alternate Route Program. The STAR program is an intensive, one-year course of study that prepares working professionals to teach in Washington state middle schools and high schools.

The four information sessions, which are free and open to the public, will all be held on the Lacey campus at the Norman Worthington Conference Center, 5300 Pacific Ave. SE. The dates and times are as follows:

  • Thursday, Feb. 20, 6:45 p.m. – 8:15 p.m.
  • Monday, March 10, 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Monday, March 17 5:15 - 6:45pm
  • Wednesday, April 9, 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.

“The STAR program is an intense one but students who are accepted into it now will be able to complete the program by May 1, 2015. This is much faster than taking the regular teacher certification route provided by most universities and which take one and a half to two years to complete” says Ann Gentle, Ph.D., STAR program director and faculty member in the University’s College of Education and Professional Psychology.

The STAR program, which includes an optional master’s degree route, is designed for individuals who already have an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university and who have at least one year of professionally oriented work experience, says Gentle. “Students bring valuable professional skills and experience to the program from the start,”

“This program works for career changers, as well as para professionals – people who are already working in the classroom as teacher assistants,” Gentle says.

The information sessions will address entry requirements, program details, required classes and internships, financial information and Washington’s teacher certification process.

The University is now accepting applications for the cohort-style program until the class is filled. Accepted students will begin classes June 16.

For more details about the STAR program or the upcoming information sessions, contact Gentle at or 360-438-4566. Prospective students can also contact the Office of Graduate Studies at or 360-412-6142.

Saint Martin’s University is an independent four-year, coeducational university located on a wooded campus of more than 300 acres in Lacey, Washington. Established in 1895 by the Catholic Order of Saint Benedict, the University is one of 14 Benedictine colleges and universities in the United States and Canada, and the only one west of the Rocky Mountains. Saint Martin’s University prepares students for successful lives through its 23 majors and seven graduate programs spanning the liberal arts, business, education, nursing and engineering. Saint Martin’s welcomes more than 1,100 undergraduate students and 400 graduate students from many ethnic and religious backgrounds to its Lacey campus, and 300 more undergraduate students to its extension campuses located at Joint Base Lewis-McChord and Centralia College. Visit the Saint Martin’s University website at

For additional information:

Ann Gentle
Director, Secondary Teacher Alternate Route Program (STAR)
College of Education and Professional Psychology

Meg Nugent Dwyer
Media relations manager