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Thread: Coming to Alaska to become a history teacher

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Pittsburgh PA

    Default Coming to Alaska to become a history teacher

    Hey everyone! I'm graduating high school this year in Pennsylvania and continuing my education in a 4 year school down here. My major is secondary education and history/social studies so I plan on becoming a high school history teacher up there in about 5 years. I know that there is plenty of time between me and my goal but I want to be prepared as possible before I do it. My first question is if in the major universities in Alaska (UAA, UAS, and UAF) if there is a coarse for a bachelors degree in secondary education and history. I couldn't find one online but I just wanted to be sure so I didn't miss anything. I would love to transfer there in 2 years if there is so I can get accustomed to the lifestyle in a college environment first instead of jumping straight into the Alaskan real world right away. Secondly what would my chances be of finding this job. I have heard it is hard, but is it impossible? Also I heard a lot about subbing out of college to work my way up. How much do subs make and is it enough to live off of up there. Also what would be the best places to try to relocate to? I am into the outdoors (hunting, fishing, hiking, etc) and that is half of the reason why I want to move. SO what would be a good place to try to find a job to accompany all of those things.

  2. #2
    Member AK Ray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    South Central


    It only took me 30 seconds to find the UAF School of Education. History is here. Your google fu is weak.

    High school teachers are needed in the bush villages as well as in town. Here is Alaska teacher placement, first stop for jobs out of town. There are many more villages than towns. Subbing really only works out in the large cities. Lots of competition for those spots.

    As for where to go and live it all depends on what you want out of life. Good salmon fishing you need to be near the coast south of the Yukon river. Trout fishing you should look at the Bristol Bay region. Saltwater fishing live from Kodiak all the way over to Canada. Deer hunting you would look at southeast. Caribou and mountains you would look in south central or north central. Caribou and tundra you would look at the northwest or the arctic. Moose pretty much anywhere south of the brooks range. If you love ruff grouse hunting then you will head home every year for xmas. If you love goose hunting you will find a village on the western coast and take part in the spring subsistence waterfowl hunting.

    Alaska is a huge place. You will never find everything in one spot. You will want to migrate a few times. However it is not Africa in its numbers of critters. It is frozen more than it is not frozen. It is dark more than it is light. It is not the place shown in all those photos. It is much more than that.

  3. #3


    My wife is an elementary teacher and so I will give you the limited insight I have. It seems that attending school here would be to your advantage. They like hiring people that they know will like Alaska and not someone who will quit after a year or two. They do hire outsiders, but what I have seen, it is generally only experienced teachers. Out of the class my wife graduated with, not all of them got jobs out of college.
    Also, from what I understand, subs need to have a college degree to qualify for that work (in Anchorage). You would probably have to be a teacher's aide while you are attending, but nonetheless good experience. It is not high paying though ($9-$10/hr. I think).
    My wife teaches in Anchorage, but was able to do a two week internship in a village-another good opportunity for college students attending here. The village teaching was very eye opening to say the least. It was reputed to be one of the more rowdy villages, but it definitely opened my wife's eyes. There are a lot of opportunities to teach in the villages, but look into the pay and conditions before you do that. Also, it might be worth a flight out to the village you're considering to meet and mingle with those you would be teaching. This should not be interpreted that I think all village teaching jobs would be bad, but as in anything else, some are better than others and open positions are probably open for a reason.
    Good Luck.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Southwest Alaska


    You will instantly be able to find a job if you want to try teaching in the Bush. But you need to be careful, as some villages are extremely racist, and you'll find out what it was like to black in the deep south in 1920. Most villages are very welcoming but because Americans can't handle the change it will take a little time to warm up to you. If you can, you'll make excellent money (housing will be provided), have a fantastic time, and be in the Garden of Eden. This is only for the Bush and not the Occupied Territories.

    PM me for more info, I'll set you up with names and numbers for a few people you can call and get hard facts.
    UAF has an excellent school of education as has been posted.
    Great spirits have always found violent opposition from mediocre minds. The latter cannot understand it when a man does not thoughtlessly submit to hereditary prejudices but honestly and courageously uses his intelligence. Albert Einstein

    Better living through chemistry (I'm a chemist)

    You can piddle with the puppies, or run with the wolves...


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