The Enhancing Excellence in Teaching Program is created. For purposes of the Enhancing Excellence in Teaching Program:
(1) Department means the State Department of Education;
(2) Eligible graduate program means a program of study offered by an eligible institution which results in obtaining a graduate degree or a graduate course of study leading to an endorsement in a shortage area specified by the State Board of Education;
(3) Eligible institution means a not-for-profit college or university which (a) is located in Nebraska, (b) is accredited by a regional accrediting agency recognized by the United States Department of Education as determined to be acceptable by the State Board of Education, (c) has a teacher education program, and (d) if a privately funded college or university, has not opted out of the Enhancing Excellence in Teaching Program pursuant to rules and regulations;
(4) Eligible student means an individual who (a) is a certificated teacher employed to teach in an approved or accredited school in Nebraska, (b) is enrolled in an eligible graduate program, (c) if enrolled at a state-funded eligible institution, is a resident student as described in section 85-502 or, if enrolled in a privately funded eligible institution, would be deemed a resident student if enrolled in a state-funded eligible institution, (d) is majoring in a shortage area, curriculum and instruction, a subject area in which the individual already holds a secular teaching endorsement, or a subject area that will result in an additional secular teaching endorsement which the superintendent of the school district or head administrator of the private, denominational, or parochial school employing the individual believes will be beneficial to the students of such school district or school as evidenced by a statement signed by the superintendent or head administrator, and (e) is applying for a loan pursuant to the Enhancing Excellence in Teaching Program to be received at a time other than during fiscal year 2011-12 or 2012-13;
(5) Majoring in a shortage area or subject area means pursuing a degree or course of study which will allow an individual to be properly endorsed to teach in such shortage area or subject area; and
(6) Shortage area means a secular field of teaching or endorsement area for which there is a shortage, as determined by the department, of properly endorsed teachers at the time the borrower first receives funds pursuant to the Enhancing Excellence in Teaching Program.