Faculty, staff and students from Arkansas Tech University welcomed guests from the Arkansas Department of Education at the Doc Bryan Student Services Center Rotunda on Thursday, April 18, and participated in a statewide initiative recognizing the contributions of education professionals.
The inaugural Arkansas Educator Commitment Signing Week, which took place April 14-20, 2019, was "dedicated to promoting and celebrating those who have committed to the teaching profession" according to information provided by the sponsoring organization, the Arkansas Department of Education.
More than 250 new, veteran, and future teachers at the ATU event signed a "Commitment to Education," showing their personal pledge to the students of Arkansas, the teaching profession and the future of education in the state.
The ceremony was organized by the ATU College of Education.
Dr. Robin E. Bowen, ATU president, shared with the ATU education students in attendance a story about Bill Gates' elementary school librarian, Blanche Caffiere, and how she changed his life forever by encouraging his love of reading.
"Be generous with your time, your encouragement and your compliments," said Bowen. "Commit to lifelong learning, be it through graduate study or the professional development opportunities that will be available through your district. And always, always remember how much power one good person can have in shaping the life of a child. As of today, you have that power."
Photographed, top of page (from left-to-right): Dr. Linda Bean, dean of the ATU College of Education; Dr. Robin E. Bowen, ATU president; Dr. Ivy Pfeffer, Arkansas Department of Education deputy commissioner of human resources, educator effectiveness and licensure; Dr. Phillip Bridgmon, interim vice president for academic affairs at ATU; and Jeff Dyer, Arkansas Department of Education teacher recruitment and retention program advisor.