Shaping the Futures of Little Ones... Today

The early years are formative. We know that if we ensure that children have a strong, positive foundation, then they will be happy and successful—socially and academically.

Infant/Toddler Program Coordinator

Head Start Teacher

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Montessori Teacher

Director of the Walpole Village School

Family Childcare Provider

This list is but a snapshot of the wide variety of careers that the Early Childhood Education Program at River Valley Community College has prepared their students for.

And to say that RVCC students are “prepared” is to understate the case considerably. Their programs are constantly growing and changing with the needs of the childcare landscape in the Connecticut River Valley. In New Hampshire alone, there are approximately 58,000 child care spaces to meet the needs of 65,000 children under the age of four. Less than 20% of these limited spaces allotted for infants and toddlers are licensed. (Childcare Aware of America)

To further meet this growing need, Program Director Kerry Belknap Morris tells us, they are excited to have added an Infant & Toddler Certificate option, which is comprised of six Early Childhood Education Courses. Among these courses, two new classes stand out as being especially timely.

Knowing that early childhood professionals play a pivotal role in helping to establish healthy foundations in social & emotional development, “Introduction to Infant Mental Health” deepens early childhood professionals’ understanding of their roles and responsibilities and provides them with strategies for promoting positive relationships.

And while “Trauma-Informed Early Childhood Services” touches on many types of trauma experienced by children, the growing opioid crisis that continues to impact the lives of children and families in our area makes this component of early child care so much more important.

With families facing increasing levels of crisis, preparing teachers to be a safe and developmentally rich resource becomes an essential community service.

To peovide the most effective program possible, RVCC has taken care to hire the highest-quality faculty. Ms. Belknap Morris herself has served both in the field and, for the past 20 years now, at the school as an advocate and instructor for following generations of teachers and leaders. She was recently recognized for her many years of excellence and continuing credentials in the field by the New Hampshire Child Development Bureau when she was presented with the Gwen and Henry Morgan Award this past April.

When asked for some adjectives that describe quality candidates for the Early Childhood Education Program at River Valley Community College, Ms. Belknap Morris gave the following: creativity, flexibility, curiosity, and joy. She added that many are bookworms and that “the best ones have a great sense of humor.” 

If this rings true for you, give them a call and see if this program is a good fit. See this brochure to learn more about the program and for Ms. Belknap Morris’ contact information.

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