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Pomona Ranked No. 8 Among Small Colleges for Contributing Seniors to Teach for America Corps

A record number of recent college graduates are joining the ranks of Teach for America this fall, and Pomona’s class of 2009 is ranked at the top of the list. With 11 seniors joining the program, Pomona is tied for eighth among small-sized colleges.

Teach for America is a national corps of mostly recent graduates who commit to teach for at least two years in urban and rural public schools to help eliminate educational inequity.

This year, the program had a record 35,000 applications from graduating seniors, postgraduates and professionals, and 4,100 were chosen for the program, the largest national corps in the organization’s history. The 2009 corps comes from more than 550 colleges, and Teach For America is the No. 1 employer of graduating seniors at more than 20 schools.

Historically, Pomona has contributed 90 graduates to Teach for America and this year, nearly 14 percent of Pomona seniors applied for the program.

Peter Kass ’09, a neuroscience major, became interested in the program during his junior year. “My high school was defined by the opportunity gap that Teach for America attempts to close,” says Kass, who will teach AP Biology in downtown Los Angeles and attend medical school after his two-year commitment to TFA is over. “For this reason, I felt compelled to TFA's mission of offering every student in America a good education regardless of their socioeconomic background."

Sarah Batizy ’09 always wanted to be a teacher, and also learned about the program during her junior year through recruitment. To learn more, she watched a Pomona alumna in her classroom. “I was hooked. I realized that TFA wasn't diluted teaching,” says Batizy, an English major. “We have real classrooms, we have real preparation, and we have real students that deserve an education.”

Once I was accepted, I began realizing how crucial and powerful this movement is. I met with alumni, spoke with students, and observed countless classrooms. The achievement gap is real, and it's unbearably and incomprehensibly wrong. I may just be one teacher, but I get to be a part of a movement that has over 4,000 amazingly talented people that are working toward the same goal.” Starting this fall, Batizy will teach English in a Compton high school.