Early Career Educators of Color Award

Pilot Program for 2024-2025

Early Career Educators of Color Award

MCTE is piloting a new program to support early career Educators of Color in developing as literacy and ELA leaders in Michigan and to amplify their voices across the state!

If you are an Educator of Color who is (a) currently teaching literacy and/or English language arts in a Michigan school and (b) are in your first five years of teaching, you are invited to apply for MCTE’s 2024-2025 pilot Early Career Educator of Color Award program.

Please contact the ECEC Co-Directors, Patrick Harris and Dr. Christina Ponzio, at [email protected] with suggestions, questions, or to share your interest in supporting this pilot program.

Why should I apply?

If you are selected for this award, you will have the opportunity to be mentored by experienced Educators of Color and receive the support of MCTE–an award-winning professional organization–as you build an accomplished teaching career in literacy/ELA education. You would also receive the following:

  • Opportunities to be a part of NCTE’s established community and MCTE’s new community of Early Career Educators of Color award winners and mentors (see more here);
  • Mentoring to develop and enact an action-research project in your local context;
  • Coaching to compose a conference proposal and prepare a conference presentation;
  • Registration, lodging, meals and mileage for three MCTE conferences (i.e., Fall Conference 2024, Think Spring Conference 2025, Fall Conference 2025);
  • 3 graduate credit hours towards the Literacy Studies MA program at Grand Valley State University;
  • Professional headshots;
  • Free books and merchandise!

In the video below, Dr. Raven L. Jones, Associate Professor in the College of Education at Michigan State University, reflects on her experience as a cohort member in the NCTE Early Career Educator of Color Leadership Program.

If I receive this award, what will I be committing to do?

  1. Attend monthly coaching sessions with a mentor between August 2024-October 2025.
  2. Attend three MCTE conferences.
  3. Plan, implement and report on an action-research project conducted in your local context.
  4. Compose a conference proposal and prepare a conference presentation.

How do I apply?

If you would like to apply for this program, please complete this application form by the end of the day on May 27, 2024. If you would like to recommend an early career Educator of Color for this award, please complete this nomination form; nominees will receive a personal invitation to apply. Award winners will be notified in early June 2024; all applicants will receive a response at this time as well.

About MCTE’s Early Career Educators of Color Award Pilot Program

History of MCTE's ECEC Award

Find out more about MCTE’s Early Career Educators of Color Award Program and what participants in the pilot program can expect if they join the cohort. NCTE Early Career Educators of Color mentor Anna Roseboro talks about the need for this program in Michigan and the journey to pilot it.

The specific purpose of this award is to support early career teachers of color as they build accomplished teaching careers in literacy education. Early career refers to practicing pre-K to university-level literacy educators of color who are in the first five years of a paid teaching career and who aspire to build a career in literacy education. People of color refers to historically underrepresented groups: African American, American Indian, Asian American, Latinx, and Pacific Islander. 

The goal of the program is to identify and mentor educators of color who may eventually serve in assigned or elected positions in their schools, community, or state. A second goal is to tap the experience of retired MCTE members who are willing to share what they know in this fashion.

Modeled after a program sponsored by the National Council of Teachers of English, the purpose of the MCTE Early Career Educators of Color (ECEC) pilot program is to support early career teachers of color as they build accomplished teaching careers in literacy education during their first five years of teaching. The ECEC program was initially proposed to MCTE’s Executive Committee by a long-time supporter of MCTE and a former member of the DIJE subcommittee, Anna Roseboro, who has provided leadership for NCTE’s program for over 20 years; Anna’s proposal also grew out of support by MCTE’s former Diversity, Inclusion, Justice and Equity (DIJE) chair, Dr. Naitnaphit Limlamai, and the DIJE subcommittee. Thanks to an incredible anonymous donation, MCTE voted unanimously to pilot this program for the next two years with hopes of securing funding to make it a permanent program. We (Patrick Harris and Christina Ponzio) have volunteered to serve as co-directors for this initiative from now until June 2027. We acknowledge the labor that preceded us in making this program possible and are grateful to stand on the shoulders of these leaders.

Please contact the ECEC Co-Directors, Patrick Harris and Dr. Christina Ponzio, at [email protected] with suggestions, questions, or to share your interest in supporting this pilot program.