Interview with Ryan

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Interview with Ryan

Ryan, ACT! Graduate

Ryan completed the act! program in 2008 and
currently teaches high school.

Any background information which you would like to share…

In my eighth year teaching science. Moved from a position in MN to one in WI and needed to become certified in Biology.  No other program would work because their university requirements did not fit into the time constraints of a person already teaching (lab classes only offered during the work day). act! program recognized the fact that I had extensive science background and experience and allowed me to become licensed in the areas I needed.  Without the act program, I would most likely still be searching for a solution. I am very grateful!

Why did you choose to change your career to secondary teaching in math or science?

I was already a teacher of science, but wanted to make the move back to secondary education, and due to licensure restraints this was more difficult to achieve than first anticipated.  My school district hired me on the understanding that I would do what I needed to become licensed in a different discipline in science. Neither they nor I, knew how hard trying to obtain that license through a normal path would be.

Why did you choose the act! program?

The act! program was quite literally the only option that would work for someone in my position. I was blessed to be contacted by someone from the program when my mass emailing effort reached UW Oshkosh. Had the admissions professional at that school not forwarded the information on, I may not have had this opportunity. This is one reason I hope the act! program gets more attention, so that other qualified teachers who cannot meet the class requirements during the working day can become teachers.

What is your current profession?

High School Biology and General Science Teacher

How are you feeling about your decision to change professions?

Changing from middle school to high school has been a good fit for me. I moved from a Suburban to a Rural setting, which fits more with my personality.

What is the best part of the act! program and the alternative pathway to licensure?

Flexibility, small size so things are personably, you are dealing with someone who knows you and your situation and treats your situation with a high regard and priority. I am very grateful with how easy the entire process was. 

What has been the most challenging component of licensure?

Honestly, and I do mean honestly, because of this program licensure was very easy compared to when I was licensed the first time. The one thing I wish would have been different was that when things got switched over to UW Oshkosh there was more communication as to where the licensure process was at: feedback about documents received, or missing.  Fees paid or needed to be paid, and status reports would have been fantastic. I was a little in the worry about doing everything with never having any actual university contact-but didn’t want to have to drive to Oshkosh either.

The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh — Where Excellence and Opportunity Meet.