College of Coastal Georgia’s impact locally is felt in many ways.

It has injected a shot of young energy into the community that is seen in many places.

It has put our slice of the coast on the map as a destination for college students around the state, region and even the world.

It has also grown to provide numerous jobs for local folks who otherwise might have had to go elsewhere to look for work.

Among the impacts we like the most is the emergence of the teacher education program and its combination with the service learning program. The two together are paying great dividends for our local school system and our local students, while also helping to prepare our next generation of educators.

This past week, a group of college students who will soon be in a classroom somewhere teaching our youth got an opportunity to experience their future profession firsthand. They visited Oglethorpe Point Elementary for field work that will no doubt be useful. Paige Middleton, an education major who works at the school explained it well.

“We get to see it in real life and see what’s actually happening,” she told The News. “You can’t re-create this in a college classroom.”

You can’t re-create the experience other education majors are getting at Goodyear Elementary either. It is there where college students spend time each semester tutoring and working directly with elementary school-aged children. The young students receive some extra help to bolster their education and the college students get to work on their craft. It is a win-win that has already begun to show progress.

The third- through fifth-grade students at Goodyear learned about pneumatics by building moveable monsters and then wrote persuasive essays about why their creations should be hired by Monster’s Inc., the fictional company in the animated Pixar film of the same name.

The project and the chance for some real-life experience are just two examples of why having a robust teacher education program at our local college can be so meaningful.

We look forward to what comes next.

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