Careers: Teaching/Pursuing Teching


I am currently finishing a BS in Electro-Mechanical Engineering Technology at Penn State but have realized engineering is not the field for me. If I have the option, I would really like to pursue a career teaching mathematics. One of my professors said he was fairly certain that I could still get certified as a math teacher for secondary education despite my degree being in engineering. What I know from what he told me and information I have looked up is that I need to take the Praxis. From your experience, what do you believe would be a good path to take from engineering into teaching?

I can't give you a specific answer to your question because every state has its own requirements for the teacher certification process. My best recommendation is that you look at the University of Kentucky site which has links to all 50 state requirements.
And yes, your teacher is correct. In general states are quite anxious to attract young talented STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) graduates into education. However, you may be quite disappointed by the inferior compensation offered in many of those same states. You can probably expect to start at about 1/2 the starting salary of an engineering job after which the difference only gets worse. Sorry I can't be more optimistic, but that is current reality. I do believe that in the VERY long term our society will regain respect for the teaching profession and will improve the compensation accordingly.

Careers: Teaching

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James J. Kovalcin


I am teaching or have taught AP physics B and C [calculus based mechanics & electricity and magnetism] as well as Lab Physics for college bound students. I have a BS in Physics from the University of Pittsburgh and a Master of Arts in Teaching from same. I have been teaching physics for 27 years.

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