The Student Newspaper of Westminster Christian Academy

The Wildcat Roar

The Student Newspaper of Westminster Christian Academy

The Wildcat Roar

The Student Newspaper of Westminster Christian Academy

The Wildcat Roar

The Faculty Fellow Phenomenon

Elijah Schmidt
Laschinski talking with his mentor Dr. Gall about class work.

Over the past decade, a decline in college graduates entering the teaching  profession has resulted in a nationwide teacher shortage. Although Westminster appears to have weathered this storm, the school has struggled to fill empty teaching positions. In response, Westminster has implemented a new program designed to fill these gaps and encourage new teachers to enter the education profession.

Two such aspiring teachers have joined the full-time staff at Westminster, and they have been dubbed “Faculty Fellows.”

Micah Gall, Head of Academic Development at WCA, was instrumental in creating the Faculty Fellows program. 

He wants to “find young people who are interested in getting into teaching […] and train them up in what it looks like to teach in a christian school,” said Gall. The Fellows Program is fundamentally similar to a traditional student-teacher position.

His dream resulted in the hiring of Caleb Laschinski, and Colton Albers. These two men were picked in accordance with Gall’s standards. Laschinski is a SLU graduate, and Albers is a Missouri Baptist University graduate.

Both Fellows have a “College degree, […] an interest in education, and excitement,” said Gall. These qualities are necessary for any aspiring Fellow.

“Most of my teaching experience is more on a theoretical side in terms of like the principles of teaching, […] different strategies […] how you engage kids, that kind of thing,” said Laschinski, a Fellow in the history department. While most of Laschinski’s experience is theoretical, his zeal and determination led him to serve as a substitute teacher last year. His time at SLU and his past experiences at Westminster are traits that caught Gall’s eye.

“I’ve taught through subbing, I worked [….] over at Missouri Baptist University […] I decided to apply for a substitute job [at Westminster] last year,” said Albers, the other Fellow. Albers has not only been a sub at Westminster, he also served at Camp Westminster, the summer camp that is held annually on campus. In addition to this, he is now the middle-school girls volleyball coach. His devotion to the Westminster community is what drew Gall to call on him.


The Fellows have quickly become normal fixtures of the classroom. Students and teachers alike have welcomed these aspiring educators into the Westminster community. “He’s organized, and he makes class fun,” said Delaney Haskell, Junior, when asked about Laschinki’s work so far. This feeling of acceptance and community is what initially drew these fine educators to Westminster. 


After Laschinski graduated, he “wanted to teach at a Christian school in the area.” So he signed on as a sub and “got to know the community really well and […] wanted to stay.” Now he teams up with Jeff Gall, the history department chair, assisting with grading, teaching. 

Albers similarly provides his services, working alongside Brian Maloy, Business and Communications department chair. He was drawn by the “huge emphasis on community” that he felt while he too was a sub here.            

The Fellows, even in these early weeks of school, have proven their mettle and lived up to their credentials. Their support has been a life saver for their teachers, and we cannot wait to see the impact these Fellows will no doubt have on our community. Micah Gall’s endgame for the Fellows Program is that those “who go through this program really love it and develop into great young teachers who we can hire full time.”

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