Today@Sam Article

Student Organization To Host Teaching Summit

Feb. 14, 2018
SHSU Media Contact: Emily Binetti


Story by Hannah Haney

Teach for TomorrowSam Houston State University and its chapter of the Texas Associate of Future Educators (TAFE) will host the 34th Annual Teach Tomorrow Summit on Feb. 15-17.

This three-day conference will give over 2,000 students the opportunity to learn the skills necessary to becoming a successful educator. This year’s conference theme is “Love, Teaching, and Rock ‘N Roll,” as the students will learn what it takes to teach like a rock star.  The theme is determined by the TAFE students and put to a vote at each conference. This year, TAFE representatives from middle school, high school and college chapters will be present.

“TAFE has been a student organization for high school students for decades. As young, aspiring teachers transition to higher education to pursue their goals of teaching, it seemed most appropriate to extend TAFE as a student organization at the higher education level,” TAFE sponsor, Lory Haas, and assistant professor for Language, Literacy and Special Populations said. “This provides students who were members of this outstanding teacher organization in high school a bridge to TAFE at the collegiate level to continue their professional growth and make life-long friendships. Additionally, for students who were not previous members of a TAFE chapter, it allows them to become an active member of an organization dedicated to their professional interests and goals.” 

The first two days of the conference will take place at La Torretta Resort and Conference Center and will conclude on the SHSU campus on Saturday. The weekend will feature a series of breakout sessions, lectures, competitions and a special concert.

Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs Debbie Price was an early advocate for TAFE and is one of the speakers during the Saturday festivities.

“As an associate dean in the COE with primary responsibilities for research endeavors and graduate programs, I’ve had more of a cheerleader’s role in the decision to bring the TAFE conference to SHSU,” Price said.  “Recently, I began volunteering in a Huntsville elementary school helping second graders improve their reading skills. That experience reminded me of a couple of the components I think are most important to being a good teacher, modeling a sense of curiosity and keeping a sense of humor.  My presentation, What’s that Under Your Arm?  Things to Keep in Mind if You Want to be a Teacher, will explore those concepts in what, I hope, is a humorous and engaging way.”

This is the third year to have the conference at a university campus and SHSU’s first time to host.

“As an organization in the first year of development, we are rapidly growing and striving to make the SHSU TAFE organization an extension of the school level TAFE chapters. We are building on the foundation set forth by TAFE to make it fit the needs of college students as they progress to their own teaching careers,” Haas said.

SHSU’s chapter of TAFE is composed of nearly 50 members and is run by President and senior, Nicole Mattingly. She will be helping to coordinate volunteers, hosting the guests on campus and speaking in the Coliseum at the first general session on Saturday morning. It is her hope to soon teach elementary aged children and special education. 

“The College of Education has been preparing for this conference for almost a year now. The Teach Tomorrow Summit is a wonderful opportunity for students to showcase what they know about the field of education, celebrate their achievements and share their passion for teaching,” Mattingly said. “This is a great opportunity for SHSU to show potential students how great our programs are in the College of Education and hopefully influence some of those students to choose SHSU for their future.”

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