Look at me now….

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Jun 26 2012

Kiss my brain, kiss my brain, throw some glitter, make it rain.

So I just now decided to start this blog.  Yes, it is Saturday morning 2 weeks into Institute and theres a ton of other stuff I should/could be doing.  For my first blog post, I feel this one deserves some background, assuming some of the people who read this might not know who I am.  Geographic overview: I was born in SanFran, raised in Raleigh, NC, went to boarding school outside of Boston (Milton Academy), and then went to Duke University in Durham, NC.  I graduated with a double major in Public Policy and Women’s Studies and a minor in History.  I decided to apply to TFA in the early part of my senior year at Duke because the Peace Corps (which I was also applying to) application process was long and extensive and felt unorganized and I was frustrated.  Around this same time I was beginning to apply to corporate recruiting jobs. Literally the entire spectrum: from humanitarian to head hunter.  I’d had a couple sorority sisters who had done TFA and was being recruited pretty aggressively.  Also, after I realized most of my friends had gotten I-Banking job offers at the end of their summer internships, I was pretty anxious to nail down my post-grad plans as well.  So I applied to TFA.  The interview process was definitely interesting.  I cant remember exactly what happened when, but I got an email that my application had been accepted and they wanted to interview.  So I had a phone interview.  It was hard to tell how it went because your my only way to gauge was an anonymous bubbly voice on the other line.  But I guess someone thought it went pretty well and I was asked to come in and teach a lesson.  If readers want, I can share my lesson overview in a later post.  Otherwise just know it included visuals and a song.  It was pretty baller.  I ended up getting offers from Peace Corps, a couple recruiting firms, and TFA.  Peace Corps offered me a teaching position in China.   It didn’t take long for me to turn that down.  How could I justify teaching a second language to Chinese college students when there are  children in your own country (hell! in my own town) who aren’t even making it out of high school? (Some studies estimate that about 7,000!!!?!?! students drop out EVERY SINGLE DAY.) Also, as I had stated in my application, I believe that a fundamental education is a human right.  I don’t necessarily believe that learning a second language is.  The recruiting firms were both in NYC and I was very tempted to take those offers, but I decided that if recruiting was my passion, it could wait.  I decided I needed to give back to the world; just to kind of say, “I know this isn’t fair, I recognize my privilege, and I plan to pay it forward as best I can.”  Clearly, I took my TFA in New Orleans offer and I’ve never looked back.  LIE.  I have looked back, so many times I can’t even count, but everytime I do reconsider, I end up with the same decision.  Some days are better than others, and I confess, I regularly look at the pictures that my NYC bound friends post of their glamourous NYC lifestyles.  But I met my 19 little monsters this week, and I can say with conviction, that this is the best thing I have ever done in my entire life.

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