Alumni "Teach for America"
Three 2008 graduates will teach in inner-city Kansas City schools under the Teach For America (TFA) program beginning this fall.
Laura Burton '08 of Lafayette, Ind., Hannah Wolf '08 of Omaha, Neb., and Joe Fox '08 of Leawood, Kan., are currently in training with Teach For America and will report to Kansas City in August. All three were also members of the Division III basketball program while at Grinnell.
Teach For America corps members work in public schools in 26 urban and rural areas most affected by the education achievement gap. Most corps members are new college graduates from some of the top institutions in the U.S. who commit to two years of teaching service in disadvantaged areas. Teach for America actively recruits on the Grinnell campus, and within the past four years, nearly 40 Grinnell graduates have committed to the national teaching corps.
Burton, who majored in French and general biology at Grinnell, became interested in Teach for America through a Grinnell friend who taught in the program for two years and because her parents are both teachers. "I hope to give students a sense of achievement and the hope to succeed," Burton said.
Kansas native Fox, who majored in economics and political science at Grinnell, expects to use his energy and passion to help children succeed inside and outside the classroom. "What I remember most about my own high school experience was positive interactions with classmates and teachers," Fox said. "I want to help my students to develop a similar passion for learning and enjoying education."
Wolf, who majored in psychology and was named most valuable in basketball, was inspired to join Teach For America when TFA founder Wendy Kopp spoke on the Grinnell campus last fall. "I chose TFA because I want to be part of the movement to lessen the achievement gap and make a difference in people's lives," Wolf said.