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Teach For America 2013 Corps

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Replies to: Teach For America 2013 Corps

  • mimk6mimk6 Registered User Posts: 4,162 Senior Member
    When you join TFA, you go through an intensive summer training program where you get student teaching experience under supervision in addition to a lot of training -- a boot camp of sorts. While you are teaching your first year, you earn your credential where you are geographically and you have a lot of support from TFA including classroom observation and support with lesson planning, discipline, etc. I have heard educators who went the traditional route say that the schooling they took for their credential wasn't worth much in terms of making them good teachers -- being mentored whether on a traditional route or otherwise seems to be more effective. Yes, I have heard of the massive layoffs. I live in a state with massive layoffs. My daughter was laid off at the end of her first year teaching and subsequently worked in a charter school which is not something that all union teachers might choose to do and where a need exists. While the layoff problem is real, the need for teachers in under-served and underachieving schools is still great, even in places where layoffs have occurred. In those areas, TFA corp members are placed in charter schools, some of those schools want TFA corp members based on experience. My daughter taught at a well-respected charter school and many of the faculty and administrators began their careers in TFA and continued in education. You are right, it is not a gap year experience, because it is a two-year commitment at the minimum. It is worth noting that times have changed and in every career there is more mobility and there is more staging of a professional life than there used to be. Some people come into teaching later in life. Some people work in one field and then another. Apart from TFA, many teachers do not stay in teaching for many years, particularly in difficult schools. So there is a need. And no school has to work with TFA or hire their teachers. The fact that schools go back to TFA for more corp members says something about what they think they are getting. That is why it is still in business.
  • RShackelfordRShackelford Registered User Posts: 15 New Member
    I'm just going to ignore negative comments...

    This is my first time actually posting to this thread. I had my final interview yesterday and these next two weeks of waiting are going to be nerve racking!

    How did everyone feel? Any idea how all of the different application components are weighted? Also, I wasn't able to highlight everything that was listed in the "Who We Look For" section of their website; I hope that doesn't hurt me. They never asked a question about motivating people so I forgot to bring it up. Whoops!
  • hopefulteacherhopefulteacher Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    I just had my interview today. I didn't feel they asked me many questions during my actual one-on-one interview at all (not sure what to think about that). But the lady interviewing me said that the reason she wouldn't be asking me much is because the person who did my phone interview took really great notes....who knows! The 2 week wait begins.
  • iTeachiTeach Registered User Posts: 24 New Member
    congrats to everyone who has completed their interview.

    I will be having my interview tomorrow and the nerves are finally kicking in. Any advice and suggestions? Thanks!
  • hopefulteacherhopefulteacher Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    I agree that it's so hard to tell which way it is going to go. I feel like it could go either way; so many people in my group seemed qualified so I don't know how they pick! I'm an Elementary Education major though so I can't let this stop me if I don't get in. I can still try getting into one of these schools myself! I just would really like the support of such a great program behind me, as well as pushing me to always do the best I possibly can...ugh such a long 2 weeks this will be!
  • TeacherhopefulTeacherhopeful Registered User Posts: 10 New Member
    Exactly two weeks from today we will know when and if we are placed!! So exciting but also terribly nerve wracking! I literally have no idea how I will stay focused for the next two weeks. How did everyone's interviews go? Any thoughts or ideas? Where do you guys want to go and what do you want to teach?

    I figure if we have two weeks to wait we might as well wait in solidarity!!

    Best of luck!
  • pinkpanther09pinkpanther09 Registered User Posts: 158 Junior Member
    I feel like it can go either way after my interview. I had two people in my group who already have their teaching credential, so their lessons blew everyone out of the water. I am glad it's done, though. The next two weeks are going to be a very hard wait!

    I couldn't believe how many people in my room were really not wearing business professional attire. One of the women hardly even fit into business casual... I know we weren't competing against each other, but it helped my confidence.

    The ball is in their court now. I have preference for Massachusetts, DC, Baltimore, St. Louis, Hawaii, Charlotte, Kansas City, and Atlanta. I have no idea what I want to teach... either way, they are going to train me, so they can really put me in whatever! I just want in!!
  • kitkat13kitkat13 Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
    Hey everyone!

    I agree with teacherhopeful that it will be hard to focus on anything other than TFA during the next 2 weeks, but I'm sure homework and work will help lol.
    I had my interview on Monday, and while I felt good about it overall, it's really hard to tell...and I definitely don't want to get my hopes up. My interviewers were nice, but they kept a good poker face, so it was hard to read them. Fingers crossed though.
  • WildsunshineWildsunshine Registered User Posts: 12 New Member
    My interview is tomorrow and I'm dyyying of nervousness!!!
  • IamafriendofGodIamafriendofGod Registered User Posts: 23 New Member
    Haha! I have been reading these post for 6 months now, and here I am now as a new member. I had my interview yesterday. The 5 minute lesson was horrible. I was so nevervous during the entire lesson and having deciding not to bring a visual was not helpful either. But I think I did well during my interview. She kept saying " my name - you are unbelievable." In the group discussion, I was the last one to speak and my ideas seem unlike everyone else to be outside of the box. And I must say, I did speak every chance I got to but it was challenging the ideas my group were proposing. I did not mean to, it is just my personality. I think outside of the box OFTEN! My interview was yesterday but I am not fretting. Lord knows, this is one of the thousand of doors of oou and if it is God's will for me, no lesson, bad interview can take it away. And if they do not give me my first localtion which is the expansion region, I may even decline the offer. So, pray for me - not only for me to get accepted but have Central FLorida as my region.

    Does anyone know about the Central Florida expansion, are they really coming down here?
  • orange3orange3 Registered User Posts: 1 New Member
    I'm trying to decide on whether I should apply on the 3DL or the 4DL. I am a political science major graduating from Syracuse University. If I apply at the 3rd deadline, my cum gpa will be a 3.35. If I wait until the 4th deadline, my cum gpa should be around a 3.45. Are my chances of acceptance greater by applying at a later date with the higher gpa, or an earlier date with the lower gpa? Is GPA even that big of a factor? Is the application entry date a significant factor as well? Additionally, does status as an under represented minorities have any impact on acceptance? Can anyone give me any advice on this?
  • hopefulteacherhopefulteacher Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    My preference locations are Eastern North Carolina, Jacksonville, Miami-Dade, Colorado, and South Carolina. I'm pretty open to going just about anywhere, though.

    Orange3--I do not think that difference in a GPA is going to matter very much, they actually don't look all that much into GPA's as long as it's above a 3.0. I'm not quite sure what you're asking about the applicaton entry date, but as for minorities I definitely think they are always looking to represent minorities that the kids can relate to--it most definitely can't hurt!
  • Tkass87Tkass87 Registered User Posts: 122 Junior Member
    I had my final interview on Friday and like the posts above, I thought the experience itself was positive. I didn't quite make it through my lesson but I got through all but my last sentence. I didn't finish because of a question the interviewer asked. The group I interviewed with was all girls and I thought everyone did gosh darn well! We made an email chain list to keep in touch. Everyone was so personable and passionate, I'm really not sure how they'll decide on who should be accepted and who shouldn't be. Good Luck to all! Two week wait will seem so long!
  • Tkass87Tkass87 Registered User Posts: 122 Junior Member
    Oh, and my regional preferences were Dallas/Fort Worth, Houston, and a smattering of other places across the nation but I'd really like to stay in Dallas as that's where I currently live and my school is here.
  • StarsThatShineStarsThatShine Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    Hi everyone! This is my first post but I just wanted to wish all of us the best of luck through the process. My top regional preferences are Philadelphia, Hawaii, San Diego and Chicago - AKA very popular choices, so we'll see where I land if I'm lucky enough to be selected. I am crossing all my fingers and toes that I get accepted. :)

    So what will I do between now and November 1st? Worry!
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