New pilot program aims to provide debt-free professional credential in child development

Eastern Michigan University’s (EMU) Engage@EMU office, Washtenaw Community College (WCC), and other local partners have collaborated on a new pilot program that will offer a child development certificate program to help county residents gain employment credentials at no cost.

 

Through the pilot program, students take four semesters of online courses through WCC and one practicum semester in Ypsilanti with another partner organization, The Collaborative: Ypsilanti YMCA Child Development Center. WCC will award college credit for the program and award a Child Development Certificate (CDC) to those who complete it, after which they can complete an assessment exam through the Council for Professional Recognition to obtain a national Child Development Associate (CDA) credential.

 

Beth Marshall, early childhood program coordinator at WCC and an early collaborator in the pilot program, says there’s a national shortage of qualified early childhood professionals, due in part to low pay.

 

“Most private child care programs

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