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Grant to Help Fund Individuals Through Midland University TCL Program


In its continuing efforts to enhance and fortify the education field, Midland University has been awarded a $1.425 million grant to help fund students completing the Teacher Career Ladder program.

The Youth, Talent & Workforce Development grant is part of $234 million being awarded to the economic recovery efforts for North and South Omaha. Individuals eligible to receive the grant must either teach or reside within the Qualifying Census Tract.

“This is part of an ongoing effort by Midland University to create options that assist  with the teacher shortage while supporting the growth of individuals within schools and communities,” said Sara Waring-Tiedeman, Vice President Strategic Partnerships for Midland University. “We strive  to connect  educational and financial resources to schools who need teachers and  individuals who want to pursue a teaching career. It makes us a great partner not only with the school districts, but with our students as well.”

The TCL program aims to prepare anyone interested in teaching in an elementary classroom with the credentials to acquire a teaching certificate. An ideal candidate for this program would be an individual who wants to become an educator who holds employment as a paraeducator or other role in a K-6 school. Students will earn a field endorsement in Elementary Education K-8 and either a supplemental endorsement in Early Childhood Education, English as a Second Language, or Special Education, K-6.

This grant will not only allow interested individuals to have their two-year path through the TCL program paid for, but through a partnership with Metro Community College, it will also help them achieve the required credits to enter the TCL program. 

“What is unique about this grant is that it is going to allow students who may only have a few, or no credits, to complete their prerequisites through Metro, then transfer to Midland’s TCL program,” Waring-Tiedeman said. “This will open doors for a lot of individuals.”

Waring-Tiedeman said those who qualify for the grant would be eligible to begin as early as the summer of 2024. The program runs year-round, with individuals doing their student teaching in the spring of their second year to complete the program. “We are looking at ways we can get the maximum number of students involved,” she said. “Our goal is to have 30 new teachers entering the workforce.”

Midland University maintains a strong partnership with Omaha Public Schools and this grant could have a great impact on the district with approximately 40 OPS schools falling within the QCT, but Waring-Tiedeman expects the impact of this grant to be metro-wide. “We’re reaching out to many districts as there could be paraprofessionals in another district, but live within the QCT,” she said. “This grant will not only benefit the districts who are facing a shortage in teachers, but it will give an opportunity for transforming earning potential, access to health benefits and retirement savings for individuals who may not currently be eligible by providing a tuition free pathway to earn a bachelor’s degree.”  

To learn more about the grant, or the TCL program, contact Meghan Christensen, Graduate & Online Recruitment Specialist, at or at 402-941-6079.

If interested in learning more about creating a strategic partnership contact Waring-Tiedeman at

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