Build the Teacher Pipeline Initiative: A Four-pronged Approach


  • Julienne Cuccio Slichko The College of Saint Rose
  • Frances Ihle The College of Saint Rose
  • Jennifer Gish The College of Saint Rose



teacher shortage, teacher pipeline, special education, teacher preparation, teacher preparation initiatives, teacher professional development, Flex graduate programs


To address local and the national teacher shortage, one college has launched the Build the Teacher Pipeline Initiative. The initiative is designed as a four-pronged, wraparound approach to not only recruit new teachers but also empower educators in elementary, secondary, and special education positions. The article outlines the goals and strategies of the four prongs – free housing for new students, scholarships for career changers, flexible graduate study options, and professional development for pre-service and in-service teachers. In collaboration with pre-k to 12 field partners, we are not only recruiting interested high school students but designing professional development opportunities to support existing teachers including our 28,000 alumni. The article will discuss the efforts and outcomes thus far and offer suggestions for replication.


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Author Biographies

Julienne Cuccio Slichko, The College of Saint Rose

Julienne Cuccio Slichko, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Special Education and Literacy at The College of Saint Rose. Dr. Slichko is permanently certified in special education (K-12) and childhood education in New York State. Her research interests include the efficacy of educational technologies and cognitive strategies, teacher preparation, and disability advocacy. Dr. Slichko serves on local advisory boards, is an advisor to professional student groups, and consults on topics related to special education and technology including accessible online course design.

Frances Ihle, The College of Saint Rose

Frances Ihle, associate professor of special education, has taught special education and literacy at the College of Saint Rose since 2011; previous experience includes a doctoral fellowship at the University of Kansas, and being a high-school specialeducation teacher in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She presently works to prepare students with disabilities for postsecondary success through Project ASPIRE and Project THRIVE, two federally funded grants awarded in 2010 and 2019. Her research projects and activities focus on academic discourse and teaching adolescents how spoken and written language patterns differ, and executive function coaching to help college students tutor their peers in selfregulation strategies such as planning, organization, and time management.

Jennifer Gish, The College of Saint Rose

Jennifer Gish is the associate vice president of marketing and communications for The College of Saint Rose. She is an award-winning communications professional with more than two decades of experience, having worked as a journalist, including as an education reporter for a daily newspaper in south central Pennsylvania, and as a higher education marketer. A first-generation college graduate, Gish is passionate about the power of education to transform lives.



How to Cite

Cuccio Slichko, J., Ihle, F., & Gish, J. . (2023). Build the Teacher Pipeline Initiative: A Four-pronged Approach. Journal of Special Education Preparation, 3(2), 18–25.



Special Issue on Teacher Shortages