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DSU’s Early Childhood Innovation Center celebrates Child Development Associate graduates

A Delaware State University sign
Delaware Public Media
A Delaware State University sign

Delaware State University’s Early Childhood Innovation Center holds its first recognition ceremony.

Those recognized are the first cohort of childcare providers who completed educational courses designed to help them deliver a higher-quality education experience to young children.

More than 200 completed their Child Development Associate Credentials, and over 100 will be at Friday’s ECIC Rising Up Together Ceremony at DSU.

The CDA graduates are eligible for a $1,000 completion bonus, if they continue working in the field in Delaware for six months.

The credential they earned is recognized nationally and in other parts of the world.

ECIC Executive Director Kimberly Krzanowski says this initiative seeks to ensure a child’s early learning experience has them ready for school.

"All of our programs and supports are focused around them getting training opportunities, credentials, degrees, so they can become better educators, and they can affect more children as they transition from early childhood into the K-12 system," says Krzanowski.

Krzanowski adds that last year when the application period opened in May, over 700 applied, but some didn’t meet the criteria.

She says this initial response to the program is impressive.

"To have that many people interested, and then to have that many people actually complete the program, right,” said Krzanowski. “We have a saying that we want to recruit, retain and graduate, and that is what we've done with this investment that the state has put forward."

The ECIC provided financial assistance and coaching to help as many providers as possible - understanding that a child’s early learning experience drastically impacts their long-term development.

Joe brings over 20 years of experience in news and radio to Delaware Public Media and the All Things Considered host position. He joined DPM in November 2019 as a reporter and fill-in ATC host after six years as a reporter and anchor at commercial radio stations in New Castle and Sussex Counties.