Professor talking to a student in an office

About the Elementary Education Program

Students in Westminster College’s Elementary Education program want to make a major difference in the lives and education of others. Through a comprehensive approach that combines in-class instruction and mentoring from Westminster faculty with student teaching experience, you will develop the skills necessary to succeed as an educator.



Student Resources

Research Guide


If you need help with research for any of your courses, Giovale Library has a research guide for School of Education programs. There, you will find information that will assist you in finding background info, books, films, articles, and curriculum materials, as well as resources that will help you cite your sources.

Additional Financial Aid Opportunities

TEACH Grant

The Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant is available to undergraduate students who are completing or plan to complete the coursework needed to begin a teaching career. This grant is different from other federal grants because it requires you to agree to complete 4 years of qualifying teaching as a condition for getting the grant and preventing it from turning into a loan.

T.H. Bell Scholarship

The T.H. Bell Scholarship is available for those intent on entering the teaching profession in Utah.


Student Perspective

 Dylan Gusman

Dylan Gusman

The Elementary Education program makes Dylan feel welcome. The supportive faculty care about you and how you are doing in the program and your life outside of school.

Dylan pairs the Elementary Education program with a special education minor. During free time, Dylan loves to explore the area around campus, shopping at the many local businesses there are to support within walking-distance.

Kate Rathfon

Kate Rathfon

The Elementary Education program has been a hands-on and supportive experience for Kate. All the professors are involved and want to see students succeed as a teacher.

Kate pairs the Elementary Education program with an Outdoor Education and Leadership minor, allowing Kate to incorporate the outdoors into the classroom and foster a love for nature in students. On campus, Kate also serves as the vice president of the indoor soccer club and works as a lead mentor for Walkways to Westminster.

Baily smiling at the camera

Bailey Johnson

Westminster makes the goal of being an elementary school teacher a reality for Bailey, providing valuable experiences and opportunities that will launch a career in teaching. Faculty members are accommodating and dedicated to seeing students succeed. Small class sizes allow collaboration with professors and peers alike, encouraging a safe, welcoming learning environment and forming tight-knit bonds. One of Bailey’s most exciting and rewarding experiences in the program so far has been a game and an interactive PowerPoint Bailey created to teach a 6th-grade class from Columbia Elementary.

Bailey pairs the Elementary Education program with a teaching students of other languages (TESOL) minor.

Bailey spends free time on campus attending late-night bonfires after class with friends, serving as the secretary of the campus National Alliance on Mental Illness club, working on-campus and off-campus jobs, attending and hosting a booth at May Term festivals, and relaxing in the lounge in Malouf Hall.


Alumni Success

Faculty photo of Sean Thorpe

Sean Thorpe

Sean (’15) attended Westminster as an elementary education major with a minor in special education. Now, Sean is teaching 5th grade in the Salt Lake Valley, loving every moment of it and constantly looking for new ways to engage students and activate their creativity. Sean is also completing graduate studies in educational leadership and curriculum design, was named Quail Hollow Elementary’s 2019–20 Teacher of the Year, and has earned a gifted and talented teaching endorsement.


Meet the Faculty

Melanie Agnew, Ph.D

Melanie Agnew, Ph.D

Dean of Education

Anneliese Cannon, Ph.D

Anneliese Cannon, Ph.D

Associate Professor

Marilee Coles-Ritchie, Ph.D

Marilee Coles-Ritchie, Ph.D

Professor

Shelley Erickson

Shelley Erickson

Adjunct

Kellie Gerbers, Ph.D

Kellie Gerbers, Ph.D

Assistant Professor

Jamie Joanou, Ph.D

Jamie Joanou, Ph.D

Associate Professor

Lowell Oswald, Ph.D

Lowell Oswald, Ph.D

Associate Professor

Rebecca Penerosa, Ph.D

Rebecca Penerosa, Ph.D

Assistant Professor