Teachers in Industry is a partnership between Tucson Values Teachers and the College of Education!


Teachers in Industry started in 2009 after conversations with business leaders from the Southern Arizona Leadership Council (SALC) who recognized the need to better support teachers. One outcome of that recognition was the formation of Tucson Values Teachers (TVT). We in the College of Education worked with TVT to submit a successful grant proposal to Science Foundation Arizona to establish the program with a focus on retaining promising early career STEM teachers. We launched the program with 20 teachers pursuing a STEM education master’s degree while working three consecutive summers in a STEM industry position. In our third summer, while continuing the master’s program option, we added teachers who worked in a summer industry position while taking one university course, focused on helping them bring STEM practices from their work experience back to their classroom, instead of the full graduate degree.

Since then, Teachers in Industry has partnered with more than 100 Arizona companies, including some of the most innovative industries on the globe. In addition to our initial years of funding from Science Foundation Arizona, we have received multiple years of support from Freeport-MacMoRan Foundation and the Thomas R. Brown Foundations.

Ten Years of Teachers in Industry!

Over the past 10 years, we have accumulated data demonstrating our high retention rate within the teaching profession. More than 90% of our participants have continued teaching for at least three years, and many have become leaders in their schools and districts.  More than 300 teachers have participated in Teachers in Industry since its inception, directly impacting over 50,000 K-12 students!

Teachers in Industry focuses on guiding teachers to effectively bring their real-world experiences back into classrooms, while building in-depth and practical knowledge of the workplace.  We accomplish this by offering paid industry experiences each summer in businesses across Arizona, along with focused professional development activities via our graduate courses.  Teachers in Industry courses are based on the STEM disciplines as well as teacher education & training.  Our program is also consistent with ISTE, the Next Generation Science Standards and the Mathematics Core Curriculum.