While a framed diploma can add prestige to an office wall, the experience gained while earning it is typically more important. Internships outside of the classroom are a great way for students gain these critical experiences, find their niche and learn what they love to do.
As part of its mission to spread knowledge and appreciation of the arts, a local partnership called ArtsCore is helping create opportunities for UW Oshkosh students who want to gain valuable teaching experience. ArtsCore is a partnership between UW Oshkosh, the Paine Art Center and Gardens and regional public school districts that offers a residency program, a colony at the Paine and teacher education opportunities on campus and within the community.
Evergreen, a local retirement community based in Oshkosh, is one organization UW Oshkosh students can apply for internships at that will help them develop teaching skills they need to be successful in their careers.
Nicole Storey, a UW Oshkosh senior studying art education, said the art class she teaches is important for developing her confidence as an instructor.
“I think it’s a great program,” Storey said. “I think getting students out into the real world and giving them more opportunities to teach is what we need, because we don’t get a lot of it through school.”
Senior Delaney Coyne, who co-teaches the class with Storey, said her passion for art along with the opportunity to teach a different age group is what drew her toward the internship.
“I think art should be embraced more, and I think the ArtsCore program helps to do that,” Coyne said.
Senior Hope Larson teaches music to Evergreen residents by leading both a vocal and a chime choir.
“At first I liked doing the hand chimes better, but now I’m actually enjoying doing the [vocal] choir just as much,” Larson said. “The residents surprise me every day with their capabilities. They are so sharp. Its unbelievable how they can just pick up on stuff. Its a blast working with them.”
Larson said the experience at Evergreen was her first time teaching, something she said is invaluable on her journey to become a high school band director. She said internships like hers can be a real test of one’s commitment and passion for teaching.
“I was a little nervous for the first couple of weeks doing it, but they warmed up to me super quick,” Larson said. “I have a real passion for music and the togetherness it brings to the residents here. It makes me so excited for the future.”
Fore more information about ArtsCore, visit uwosh.edu/artscore