How are the interns selected?

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Entrance to the yearlong internship begins during the preservice teacher's junior year with an informational meeting about all of the student teaching options that are available to students, typically held in September. This general meeting is followed by an informational meeting that is specific to the elementary PDS. Following the informational meetings, all students who think they might be interested in applying for the PDS are asked to complete an online (through the home page of this website) pre-application. This pre-application is usually available in early October and must be completed prior to the last week of classes for the fall semester. The pre-application does not obligate the student to apply for the PDS; it simply indicates that the student may apply for the PDS. Completing the pre-application keeps the student's options open while failure to complete the pre-application in the fall means that the student will not be able to apply for the PDS for the following year.

In early January of the junior year, all students who completed the PDS pre-application are invited to a meeting where PDS faculty and current interns talk with potential applicants about the PDS opportunity.  All those students who are interested in applying for the PDS then complete an online written application for the PDS internship. A team of university faculty and State College teachers rates that application. Following the written application, applicants are invited to a 20-30 minute interview with a team of State College teachers and university faculty. PDS interns are then selected on the basis of written applications and the interviews. Applicants are typically notified by the beginning of spring break as to whether they will be participating in the PDS for the following year.   Students who apply for the PDS are also asked to apply for traditional student teaching in the event that there are not enough spaces in the PDS internship for all the students who applied.

What is a Professional Development School? What are the goals of our Professional Development Schools? Introduction to the Penn State Elementary Education PDS What is the intern's field experience like? How are the interns selected? What does the work of a mentor and intern look like in our Professional Development School? What are some of the unique experiences an intern has in a Professional Development School? What is the PDS Conceptual Framework? Why should you consider hiring an intern from the Professional Development Schools?