Alpena Community College (ACC), in collaboration with Northern Michigan University (NMU) and Central Michigan University (CMU), is proud to announce a new initiative that will open additional pathways for aspiring educators in Northeast Michigan. These strategic partnerships, collectively known as the Northeast Michigan Teacher Pipeline, will offer students an affordable, seamless, and locally rooted pathway to achieve their teaching dreams.

Students in Northeast Michigan seeking a career in education can now commence their journey at Alpena Community College, enjoying the benefits of local and affordable education for the first two years. This "2+" pathway ensures that students receive a solid foundation in education without the financial burden of relocating to larger universities right from the start.

After completing their first two years at ACC, students can easily transfer to Central Michigan University or Northern Michigan University to fulfill the remaining teacher program requirements. This streamlined process ensures that students experience a smooth transition while continuing their education.

In addition to the 2+ pathways, ACC, CMU, and NMU are committed to exploring further opportunities for collaboration within teacher education programs. This includes investigating virtual learning options, rural grant opportunities, and other creative means to support aspiring teachers in the region.

As part of this new partnership, a new course will be offered within ACC's existing Associate of Arts in Education program.  History 123 (HST 123) - History and Exploration of Embattled Profession:  Introduction to Education provides students an opportunity to explore careers in education, including teaching, educational support roles, and administration.  The course emphasizes the evolution of both private and public education in the United States over some 200 years.  It will provide students with practical applications and immersion opportunities to gain a deeper understanding of current realities, as well as those anticipated in the education profession.

Tim Kuehnlein and Amanda Campbell Crawford, both instructors of history at ACC, are the lead faculty for the course, and with Dr. Paige Gordier, Vice President of Instruction at ACC, they have been collaborating on the design and delivery of the course in the larger context of ACC’s program development and transition of students to partner universities. They comment, “The course is an opportunity to perk interest among aspiring students in education professions that have lost some appeal for various reasons over the years.  It is an opportunity to inspire, inform, motivate, and reinvigorate by using the perspectives of history with an eye toward the future.”  

The course is being offered in the Spring Semester at the main campus of ACC starting in January and is available remotely to anyone interested, including those students at the satellite campuses of Huron Shores or any of the local high schools served by ACC’s remote access options.

Dr. Paula Lancaster, Dean of the College of Education and Human Services at Central Michigan University, expressed her enthusiasm for the collaboration, stating, "This partnership marks an exciting step forward in teacher education. Together, we will empower Northeast Michigan students with the resources and support needed to excel in the field of education."

Dr. Joseph Lubig, Associate Dean of the College of Health Sciences & Professional Studies at Northern Michigan University, shared his perspective, saying, "This partnership aligns with NMU's commitment to providing exceptional teacher education. We're eager to work together to ensure aspiring educators in Northeast Michigan have a clear and accessible path to achieve their goals."

Dr. Don MacMaster, President of Alpena Community College, expressed his pride in the collaboration, stating, "We are thrilled to be part of this partnership, offering affordable education and career opportunities to our local students. The Northeast Michigan Teacher Pipeline will pave the way for a brighter future for our region."

Justin Gluesing, Superintendent of the Alpena-Montmorency-Alcona Educational Service District (AMA ESD), acknowledged the significance of this initiative, saying, "This collaboration strengthens the entire educational landscape in Northeast Michigan. Our corner of the state is isolated from our university partners, and this partnership will help build our local pool of professional educators to support our region for years to come."

For general questions about the Northeast Michigan Teacher Pipeline, please contact Dr. Paige Gordier, ACC Vice President of Instruction 989-358-7458.

About Alpena Community College: Alpena Community College is a comprehensive community college located in Alpena, Michigan.  ACC offers two-year degrees, one-year certificates, customized corporate training, and community education to all of Northeast Michigan. 

About Central Michigan University: Central Michigan University is a leading public research institution located in Mount Pleasant, Michigan. CMU offers nearly 300 academic programs at the undergraduate, masters, specialist, and doctoral levels and across a wide range of academic fields, including business, education, health professions, humanities, social and behavioral sciences, STEM, and more.

About Northern Michigan University: Northern Michigan University, located in Marquette, Michigan, is a four-year public university offering over 170 degree programs, including 25 graduate programs.  NMU is one of the most affordable public universities in Michigan. 

About Alpena, Montmorency, and Alcona Educational Service District (AMA ESD): The AMA ESD serves students and local school districts in Northeast Michigan. The AMA provides business services for some of our smaller districts, leadership and program support for all our districts in early childhood education, instructional coaching, student intervention supports, and special education - our largest support area.