FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) --A brand-new program just launched at Fresno State and organizers hope it helps lessen the teacher shortage here in the Central Valley.
Some of the valley's future teachers are on Fresno State's campus this summer, many of them are working with Fresno Elementary students taking part in the state's Summer University.
And some are using the opportunity to help them get a job.
"We were trying to come up with some ways to help with the teacher shortage throughout the valley and then at one of our staff meetings earlier this year he said we need to have a boot camp and get as many people ready for fall as we possibly can," Steve Price with Fresno State said.
The four-week, intensive program gives students a head start towards becoming a teacher.
More than 40 Fresno State students are enrolled in the "teacher boot camp," earning them the three necessary credentials they need to become teacher intern in a real classroom: Instructional Technology, Literacy with English-Learners and Field Experience with Students.
"They want to be an intern," Price said. "They get offered a job but when they show up to get the internship credential they say, 'Oh I needed to get those 8 units.' So, we're providing the 8 units now for those who may not have had a chance during the past school year to accomplish those 8 units."
Karen Urrutia-Mickler is enrolled in the teacher boot camp and already has a spot to be a Spanish teacher at Minarets High School in the fall.
"I entered as a long-term sub and then as an emergency credential," she explained. "And this program has made it possible for me to go right into an internship in the fall."
Karen says the boot camp not only gives her the classes she needs but also some great strategies to use in the classroom.
"Having a tight group of students where we can move through it together, learn from each other," she said.