Newsmakers: Rasmussen U. Works to Address Early Childhood Staffing Shortage
Rasmussen University is trying to help meet the need for staff in the early childhood education field.
“In early childhood education right now in childcare, the staffing needs are great,” said Mary Muhs, department chair for early childhood education. “It was there before coronavirus happened but with the coronavirus pandemic, it has magnified. So early childhood programs need early childhood educators in a drastic way for families to be able to go back to work.”
Rasmussen University is currently offering an Early Childhood Education Associate’s degree for $15,000 or less depending on transfer credits.
“It could be your opportunity to take some self-directed assessments based upon your past experience and your knowledge or any other potential credentials that you might bring in to the early childhood program,” explained Muhs. “We’re trying to help our educators get educated so that they are prepared to take care of children and families in early childhood programs out there.”
Muhs says this need and effort extends not just to teachers, but to those providing care for young children.
“We’ve always thought in early childhood education that it’s early education and care, but it’s been more evident now with the concerns with a child’s mental health even in infancy,” said Muhs. “It’s making sure we focus in the program on caring for the children, the love we give and the nurturing interactions that we provide, the support for family, that’s a critical part of our program.”
Muhs says the industry is asking for more workers, so the college is looking for interested, passionate people.
“We know there’s going to be some folks out there with an education already. Some folks that have some education but never completed it and really see the passion for caring for children and families,” said Muhs. “So we want to capitalize on that passion and those people who are really interested in making a difference in children and families and helping them get that education is the next step so that they are qualified, to care for the children. They have the educational background, understanding of care and nurturing, and we can share that with children and families.”