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W&L Among Top 20 Small Colleges and Universities Sending Grads to Teach for America

Washington and Lee University has contributed 13 graduates to Teach for America’s 2014 teacher corps, placing it among the top 20 small colleges and universities in the country for the second straight year.

They join the most diverse corps in the organization’s 25-year history, which includes graduating seniors from a range of backgrounds and experiences, as well as a growing number of individuals with professional experience. Totals include both 2014 graduates and alumni of previous classes who are transitioning to teaching from another field or joining the corps as experienced educators.

A third of Teach for America recruits are the first in their families to attend college; nearly half were Pell Grant recipients (an indicator of low-income status); and half self-identify as people of color.

“We’re incredibly grateful for the wide range of colleges, universities and professional backgrounds that our corps members are coming from,” said Elisa Villanueva Beard, co-chief executive officer of Teach For America. “This is our most diverse corps yet — we really value the breadth of experience and identity that they’ll bring to the classroom.”

This fall, 10,600 first- and second-year corps members will teach in high-need classrooms across 50 regions. The 5,300 incoming corps members represent more than 850 colleges and universities and 49 states and the District of Columbia. In addition to the corps, Teach For America’s network of more than 37,000 alumni continue to work toward educational equity, with 86 percent working full-time in education or with low-income communities.