by Whitney Hale
Fifteen graduates of the University of Kentucky will head back to the classroom this fall as part of a new class of corps members in Teach for America. The UK group is among thousands of new teachers chosen this year for the national program, which is known for selecting outstanding college graduates to commit to teach for two years in disadvantaged urban and rural public schools.
Teach for America places its recruits in the nation's highest-need elementary and secondary schools in many of the country's lowest income communities, both rural and urban, in an effort to close the achievement gap between economically advantaged and disadvantaged children.
Currently, around 10,400 first- and second-year corps members instruct more than 750,000 pre-K through 12th grade students in 46 urban and rural regions across 36 states and the District of Columbia.
The 15 UK graduates who have taken teaching positions with Teach for America are:
- Stephanie Anderson, of Frankfort, Ky., an English and Spanish graduate who will teach Spanish in Appalachia;
- Isabel Andreasen, of Crestwood, Ky., a biology graduate who will teach general science in Indianapolis, Ind.;
- Monique Brown, of Radcliff, Ky., a middle school education graduate who will teach general science in South Carolina;
- Andesia DeJesus, of Radcliff, an elementary education graduate who will teach at an elementary school in Houston, Texas;
- Jennifer DeLuke, of Kent, Ohio, an English graduate who will teach at an elementary school in the Mississippi Delta region;
- Rachel Dickenson, of O'Fallon, Ill., an economics graduate who will serve in early childhood education in Tulsa, Okla.;
- Alexandra Burgess Flores, of Elizabethtown, Ky., a Spanish graduate who will teach Spanish in South Carolina;
- Mike Gasser, of LaGrange, Ky., a biology graduate who will teach general science in eastern North Carolina;
- Luke Glaser, of Louisville, Ky., a Spanish graduate who will teach Spanish in Appalachia;
- Mallory Hall, of Paducah, Ky., a psychology graduate who will teach general science in Appalachia;
- Gabrielle Kroon, of Cypress, Texas, a kinesiology graduate who will teach general science in Alabama;
- Jana Milan, of Knoxville, Tenn., a journalism graduate who will teach math in Indianapolis;
- Jessica Mobley, of Lexington, a secondary English education graduate who will teach English in Tulsa;
- Nicholas Murphy, of Louisville, a biology graduate who will teach math in Tulsa; and
- Taylor Willett, of Louisville, a psychology graduate who will serve in special education in Baltimore, Md.
Teach for America recruits represent a full range of academic majors, including math, science and education — some with work experience from a variety of career sectors including finance, technology, military and nonprofit.
Teach for America participants receive a first-year teacher's salary and are awarded an AmeriCorps education grant of approximately $11,100 (dependent on federal appropriations). The award can be applied to student loans or the pursuit of further education.
Students interested in applying for the Teach for America program in the upcoming year should contact OJ Oleka at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last semester, we interviewed Luke Glaser, an A&S Ambassador, about his upcoming assignment.