Our Waldorf Early Childhood Teacher Education program welcomes applicants who have been actively working in a Waldorf early childhood setting for one school year prior to enrollment in Sunbridge. “Actively working” includes serving as a lead teacher, assistant teacher, parent-child group leader, intern, or regular volunteer or substitute. While the most ideal preparation is working five mornings a week over the course of a year, working two mornings a week for a year is an acceptable minimum. If you are not certain of your eligibility, or if you would like to discuss your particular situation and whether it complies with these requirements, please contact our admissions coordinator (contact information, below).
It is also expected that you will continue to actively work with children in a Waldorf early childhood setting throughout the length of our program. (Please note that if you are not working within a WECAN-recognized Waldorf early childhood setting, you may be required to do an additional internship before receiving your Sunbridge diploma.)
If you are not currently situated in a Waldorf early childhood setting and would like to locate one near you, visit WECAN (Waldorf Early Childhood Association of North America) for a member listing.
Applicants are expected to be familiar with Waldorf Education and anthroposophy through faculty study and other study groups, workshops, and conferences. Anthroposophical Foundation Studies is embedded in the program curriculum and is not a separate prerequisite.
A bachelor’s degree is not required for admission to this program, but a high school diploma is required.
This program enrolls every other summer. The next cohort enters June 2020.
The regular application deadline is May 1. Applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible (especially those individuals seeking financial aid). Applications submitted after May 1 are considered on a space-available basis and must contain a late application fee.
Applications for the June 2020 entering cohort will be available October 1, 2019.
A completed application includes:
- Application form: completed, signed and dated
- Non-refundable $50 application fee. Applications submitted without this fee will not be processed. Applications submitted after May 1 must include a $50 late fee.
- Current resumé
- Personal statement
- One letter of recommendation sent from the recommending person directly to the Sunbridge Institute Admissions Office
- If applicable, a transcript from your degree-granting institution or any college attended. Otherwise, a high school transcript or diploma.
- If applying for Financial Aid, all appropriate paperwork
- Send your application and non-refundable application fee of $50 to:
Sunbridge Institute Office of Admissions
285 Hungry Hollow Road
Chestnut Ridge, NY 10977
Applications may be submitted at any time. Once your application is received, it is reviewed for completeness and forwarded to an Early Childhood Program director. Admissions decisions are sent out soon thereafter, on a rolling basis.
Occasionally, applicants are admitted to Sunbridge Institute on a provisional basis. In such cases, students are accepted into the program with the proviso that they meet specific conditions as indicated in their letter of acceptance.
Sunbridge is approved by the U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement’s Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) to invite the transfer of foreign students into the United States to study at our Institute. We welcome students from all over the world to join our student body and engage in the pursuit of becoming a Waldorf teacher.
Please click here to learn about the step-by-step process of applying for a visa with the support of Sunbridge Institute.
NOTE: All applicants whose first language is not English or who have taken their prior education in a non-English-speaking college or university must demonstrate oral and written proficiency in English during the admissions process (through a hand written personal statement and phone conversation). Taking the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) may be required.
Enrolled students (those who have been accepted into the Early Childhood Teacher Education program, have completed and signed a current enrollment agreement and meningitis and photo release forms, and have paid a non-refundable registration fee which is applied toward tuition) may defer enrollment for one enrollment cycle (two years). Before returning, the student must have a phone conversation with the Director of Education. If significant changes in life circumstance have occurred, the Director of Education will refer to a Program Director for a follow-up conversation.
Deferments may not be extended; if you choose not to matriculate in the next enrollment cycle, you must re-apply to be considered for admission in a future cycle and pay all pertinent fees (including application and registration fees).
Individuals interested in seeking an enrollment deferral should contact the Admissions Office to begin the process.
Some Frequently Asked Questions About our Admissions Requirements
How much prior experience in a Waldorf early childhood setting do I have to have?
You need a minimum of two mornings a week over the course of the year leading up to your enrollment to be considered for admission for this program. This does not have to be a paid position; what matters is your ongoing contact and experience with the children.
I volunteer or substitute at my local Waldorf early childhood program. Is that experience sufficient to meet your requirement?
Yes, if the school at which you volunteer or substitute will commit to you having a regular, consistent presence there. If you have any questions, contact our admissions coordinator.
I’m working in a Waldorf-based home-program or childcare program. Is that acceptable teaching experience?
We want all our students to have the vibrant experience of working in an established Waldorf early childhood setting alongside Waldorf educators. If your teaching experience falls short of this, we may require additional practicum visits to a fully-established Waldorf early childhood setting.
Do you require a background in Foundation Studies?
No. Anthroposophical coursework is woven into the program curriculum, and previous Foundation Studies coursework is not a prerequisite for admission. However, if you have the possibility to engage in Foundation Studies either prior to or concurrent with your study here, we strongly encourage you to do so.
Do I need a college degree to enroll?
No, a college degree is not required, but you do need a high school diploma or equivalent.
If I’ve done prior work in early childhood development or the arts, can I be exempt from certain courses?
Sunbridge’s Early Childhood Teacher Education program is designed as a totality, and you need to participate in the full program to complete the diploma requirements. Students who have done some prior work and repeat certain courses tell us they find it to be a deepening experience and are glad to have had the opportunity for this additional work. (Note: If you are a highly experienced Waldorf early childhood educator with significant relevant prior coursework, you may qualify for our Early Childhood Completion Track.)
If you have any questions about your eligibility status or about applying to our program, we encourage you to contact Barbara Vitale, our admissions and summer Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org / 845-425-0055 x20
In all of its dealings, including its admissions, educational, and employment practices, it is the policy of Sunbridge Institute, its Trustees, officers, employees and other duly authorized agents not to discriminate against any individual or group for reasons of race, color, creed, gender, age, culture, ethnicity, national origin, marital status, sexual orientation or identification, or mental or physical handicap.