Yesterday, there was a Teach for America interest meeting in the Comm School. I couldn’t make it, but I have something even better to offer. I really believe in the idea of Teach For America, so for those of you interested in applying, I was able to interview Lauren “La-La” McGlory who just begun her two years with the program. For those of you who don’t know La-La, as well as being a Lawnie, she was our previous BSA President. She contributed to many of areas of the UVa community life, and so she was a perfect candidate to tell us about her experience. Without further ado:
Name: Lauren “La-La” McGlory
Graduation Year: 2009
What made you apply for Teach for America?
I wanted to join Teach for America to make a direct impact in our country’s present-day Civil Rights issues. While at college, I never really sat down and thought about just how inadequate our nation’s public schools are. With high school graduation rates in Detroit at only 27%, it is no wonder education reform is desperately needed. [Editor’s Note: La-La is from Detroit, Michigan]
What was the process like?
The process for me was a bit different. Of course, you apply electronically. From there, you have a choice on whether you want a phone interview. I was fortunate to pass mine. From there, you prepare for the group/personal interview. This is where the infamous 5 minute lesson comes into play. In addition to that, after your group interview, you have a 45 minute individual interview.
How did you hear about your acceptance?
Via email and the TFA website.
Where were you placed?
How long have you been on the job thus far?
I have been teaching since September 8th.
How do your previous expectations of LA differ from what you know now?
My expectations were made more clear. The drastic differences between the rich, the poor and the homeless is too much for words.
What do you hope to gain?
I hope that my children (students) leave with a confident understanding that they can do anything. I also want my children to leave with a solid foundation to take on 1st grade.
What do you like thus far about the experience? What difficulties are you having?
I like having a direct positive impact on someone’s life. I am teaching Kindergarten which mean I am the first schooling experience these kids have. It is really rewarding to see my kids have “ah-hah” moments. My difficulties lie in differentiating those who are advanced and those who need remediating.
Advise for future applicants?
For those who want to apply – think about how well you can handle stress and multi-tasking. Think about what really motivates you. This is not something to do if you are looking for a resume booster or if you cannot find a job. Only do this if you really believe in the mission of TFA and if you have the heart. In regards to the application process, really highlight your extracurricular activities and how you have handled problems or pressing issues in the past. Also, for those who are getting ready for their final interview, make sure you lesson plan is exactly 5 minutes! (no more, no less!!!!)
The interview was short but sweet. If you have anymore questions, you can contact La-La at firstname.lastname@example.org
The next application is due tomorrow September 18th, however they have more due dates all year-round:
|Sept. 18, 2009;||Oct. 28, 2009;||Jan. 8, 2010;||Feb. 19, 2010|