Kansas State University


K-State College of Education

College focuses on needs of military-connected students

Faculty tour an elementary school on post.

K-State’s College of Education was one of the first 100 Universities to join Operation Educate the Educator, an initiative that is part of Joining Forces developed by First Lady Michelle Obama and Jill Biden.

Operation Educate the Educator is a nationwide initiative to better support military families by including military-connected students in the definition of diverse populations.

Sandy Risberg, instructor in the department of curriculum and instruction and subject matter expert as a military spouse and parent, explained the benefits. “By including the military child as a diverse population, the faculty will have a better opportunity to train preservice teachers about the military child’s lifestyle and address their unique needs,” Risberg said. “This will also enhance the faculty member’s ability to teach the preservice teachers in the course who are also military-connected. It’s a win-win situation.”

Last semester, Risberg arranged a visit to Fort Riley for curriculum and instruction faculty, including a tour of a model home, elementary school and middle school teen center. “Our faculty needs to have a good concept and connection with the culture and lifestyle of the military-connected student to educate future teachers.”

Risberg is conducting professional development sessions such as “The Military-Connected Child in the Classroom” at area schools. It provides teachers with a glimpse into the culture of the military child and family, the social-emotional cycle that mirrors the deployment cycle, and strategies that can be used with students in the classroom to build resiliency.

Faculty on a field trip!
2 thoughts on “College focuses on needs of military-connected students
  1. Sandy,
    Just wanted to let you know that I applaud your efforts to connect the K-State educators, both past, present, and future with the world of the military. I am an Army brat whose father was stationed at Ft. Riley back in the 60’s. Because of this posting, I went to K-State and received an excellent elementary degree and then master’s in curriculum education. Unfortunately, the military was not very popular during this era, but I never felt this attitude on the campus. I went on to receive the Kansas master teacher award from Emporia in 1988 as a library media specialist. I was teaching at Custer Hill Elem.at the time. I also did my student teaching at Ft. Riley Elem. I am recently retired in the Olathe area and am so excited to read all the wonderful things that are happening at K-State in partnership with Ft. Riley. Need anymore perspective on this issue, just let me know. Thanks again. Bonnie

  2. Bonnie, It was great to read your comments and a brief history of your journey from Army Brat to Outstanding Educator. You are so right about the attitude of KSU towards the Military. The support is huge and from all areas from the President, to the College Deans, to the classroom professors and the students themselves. The College of Education is really blazing some paths for our future teachers in providing them the skills and tools they will need as they go on their journey as an educator. By preparing teachers to meet the unique educational needs of our Military connected child we are truly meeting our mission of “Preparing educators to be knowledgeable, ethical, caring decision makers for a diverse and changing world.”

Comments are closed.