In the midst of a national teacher shortage, Alaska does not simply need teachers, it needs high quality educators who reflect the diversity of its students. Teachers who are prepared in Alaska not only bring cultural familiarity, but also have lower turnover rates. Grow-your-own initiatives to recruit and train local teachers are a sustainable and effective way to staff classrooms with “homegrown” educators who are culturally and linguistically similar to the students and communities they serve, but Alaska is not recruiting enough Alaskans into teaching. CAEPR director Dayna DeFeo and ISER research professional Trang Tran explore two key strategies to growing our own teachers: high school career exploration courses and pathways for paraprofessional educators to pursue teaching certifications. They look at the factors that motivate incoming teacher candidates to pursue a career in education, review the literature around grow-your-own strategies, review Alaska’s existing efforts and programs in these areas, and make policy recommendations. Check out their report about growing Alaska’s teacher workforce.