HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - William Carey University President Dr. Tommy King announced this week the university’s school of education is now the largest in the state.
The university’s Dean of Education, Dr. Ben Burnett, said passionate educators are the reason for the William Carey School of Education’s growth.
“What contributes to our being able to do that is the faculty and staff that we have here 100%," Burnett said. “I give them all the credit.”
According to the U.S. Department of Education and Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning, the William Carey School of Education had 521 undergraduate and graduate students earning degrees in 2018. The data showed the university out-performed the next-largest school of education by nearly 70 graduates. Burnett said this shows the university is dedicated to supporting education and solving the problem of teacher shortages.
“We want more undergraduates and this year we had a 25% increase," Burnett said. “So I think down the road we will see our undergraduate enrollment and graduation numbers from undergraduate increase as well.”
Burnett said the growth of the school of education comes from outside-the-box ideas that wouldn’t come to life with out the university president, Dr. Tommy King. Burnett said King backs educators like Dr. Chuck Benigno.
“I think what makes William Carey different is the lack of bureaucracy," Burnett said. “That when we come up with an idea, we just make it happen, and so actions and plans can be put in place immediately that can address the needs of Mississippi’s educators.”
William Carey University’s assistant professor of education, Rachel Pitts, said the school invests in the students spiritually as well as academically.
“We really create a well-rounded individual that’s able to discern if this truly is their calling,” Pitts said.
Burnett said this is his 34th year in education. He said it’s not an easy job, but the most rewarding, so if a student wants to be apart of the growth happening at William Carey University’s School of Education, he said they’ll help you get your degree in a profession that’s like no other.