The School of Education's newest degree program, the Master of Urban Education (M.U.Ed.), is designed to be an innovative and contemporary curriculum to serve as professional preparation for urban educators. It is meant to replace the existing degree program, the Urban Education concentration in the M.A.Ed. degree, which is currently a part of the Memphis Teacher Residency (MTR) program.
Union's School of Education continues to partner with a Memphis foundation to offer a graduate degree for the initial licensure of urban teachers. The mission and purpose of the MTR program coincides with the core values of this university, seeking a corps of teachers who have already completed an undergraduate content area and who share a calling dedicated to significantly improving the lives of the most at-risk students in urban Memphis classrooms and schools. The MTR is part of an national urban residency network (Chicago, Boston, Denver, Miami, New Orleans, and more). The M.U.Ed. degree is a one-year graduate program with concentrations in Secondary as well as Elementary Education that is an intensive integration of graduate work with a year-long internship for Residents working with an assigned Mentor teacher from the school system and Coach from the university faculty. The Resident Internship is the first full-year clinical experience of its kind offered by Union's School of Education.
Graduate students selected for the MTR program receive a stipend, housing assistance, and free tuition (funded by the foundation). Upon graduation, the Residents will have completed the M.U.Ed., initial Tennessee teacher licensure, and the first year teaching experience (through the internship) in Tennessee. In return, these graduates commit to teach in urban schools in Memphis for a period of three years as part of the MTR agreement. Delivery of the M.U.Ed. is designed to fulfill Union's role in the MTR partnership, but the degree is a stand-alone program that could be functional in other urban settings.