This program enrolls every other summer. The next cohort enters summer 2024.
Our Waldorf Early Childhood Teacher Education program welcomes applications from both “in-service” teachers (individuals who are actively working a minimum three days a week as lead or assisting teachers in a WECAN/AWSNA-affiliated early childhood setting, including WECAN-affiliated home-based programs) and “pre-service” teachers (all other individuals).
Applicants must have completed, at minimum, a high school education (or equivalent for international study). However, while a bachelor’s degree is not required for admission, we highly encourage applicants to have earned at least some college credits. It is important to note that when hiring faculty—especially for lead positions—many Waldorf early childhood settings seek candidates who possess a bachelor’s degree and/or college credits in early childhood development.
Familiarity with Waldorf Education
Applicants are expected to be familiar with Waldorf education and anthroposophy through faculty study and other study groups, workshops, and conferences. As anthroposophical Foundation Studies are embedded in the program curriculum, previous Foundation Studies coursework is not a prerequisite for admission; however, applicants are strongly encouraged to engage in Foundation Studies either prior to or concurrent with their Sunbridge studies.
All Sunbridge early childhood program students are required to observe and work with children in a Waldorf early childhood setting during the course of their Sunbridge studies; these requirements vary according to each student’s work status. (See our main program page for further details.) In addition to the required observations, students are encouraged to visit and experience Waldorf schools as much possible and especially to have regular exposure to a WECAN/AWSNA early childhood setting. We particularly encourage pre-service teachers to familiarize themselves with Waldorf early childhood settings prior to entering our program. If you are not currently situated in a WECAN/AWSNA 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.
Requirement for Pre-Service Teachers
In order to provide these individuals with an essential foundation for their Sunbridge studies, all incoming pre-service teachers are required to attend an online Waldorf early childhood “primer” shortly before the start of their classes. The 2022 primer consisted of three, 1.5-hour modules containing both live Zoom instruction and pre-recorded videos, and the $100 fee was applied to the first tuition payment. Information will be posted about the 2024 primer.
Applications for the 2024 entering cohort will be posted October 1, 2023. 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.
A completed application includes:
- Completed application form
- Current résumé
- Personal statement
- Two letters of recommendation, accompanied by your signed letter of recommendation form and sent from your recommenders directly to the Sunbridge Institute Admissions Office
- If applicable, a transcript indicating the highest level of college credits/degree earned; otherwise, your high school diploma/transcript. If your college/university attendance was outside the US and you are having difficulty obtaining a transcript, please contact the admissions office.
- Non-refundable $50 application fee. Applications submitted after the May 1 deadline will incur an additional $50 late fee.
Once your application is received, it is reviewed for completeness and forwarded to an Early Childhood program director who will contact you for an interview. 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.
Accepted program students who have paid a non-refundable registration fee (which is applied toward tuition) may defer enrollment for up to one enrollment cycle.
Before returning, the student must submit an updated personal statement including a listing of their current teaching experience and subsequently have a phone conversation with the director of education. If significant changes in life circumstance have occurred, the director of education will refer the student to a program director for a follow-up conversation. Students must then complete an enrollment agreement, along with meningitis and photo release forms, before being considered officially enrolled.
Individuals interested in seeking an enrollment deferral should contact the admissions office to begin the process.
If you have any questions about applying to our program, we encourage you to contact our admissions office at [email protected] / 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 disability.