To view this page ensure that Adobe Flash Player version 11.1.0 or greater is installed.
Amy Erwin of Teach For America is
working to shape generations to come
with education, passion and love.
And she’s doing it one child at a time.
interview by k aya baez
Teach For America
3250 NE 1st Ave. Miami, FL 33137
Tell us about Teach for America?
At Teach For America, we work to ensure that all children
have access to an excellent education by building a diverse,
highly selective corps of outstanding recent college graduates
who commit 2 years to teach in urban and rural public schools
in our nation’s lowest-income communities, and who become
lifelong leaders for expanding educational opportunity. Since
our expansion to Miami-Dade in 2003, we have placed over
350 teachers in our city’s highest-need schools. Currently, 97
corps members are dramatically raising achievement for more
than 7,500 students, with results that have raised national and
How did you get involved?
I got involved in doing fundraising for the program after being
moved by an article I read in The Miami Herald. The article
discussed a $6 million grant that the John S. and James L. Knight
Foundation made to Teach For America. It depicted a student
gaining confidence before the FCATs. By the end of the article, I
was in tears. Today, I want to make great education opportunities
available for everyone.
What are Teach For America’s goals for the future?
My own goals are to continue in whatever ways I can to help
all students have access to the best education possible. This
means many things. It means helping students have access to
computers, printers, as well as the Internet. It means having
access to adults or older students that can help with homework
or resources needed for assignments. I often think how it
might make a student feel who cannot get to a store to get a
poster board or does not have color ink to print pictures for
an assignment that has a quick deadline. I have seen children
crying who did not have someone to help. I can never get those
images out of my mind.
How can we help?
The first way to help is to visit a classroom. We would love to
take you out to see our corps members in action. If you have
60 minutes, you can truly get a close-up view of what it looks
like to close the achievement gap. You can also help defray the
costs of recruiting, training and supporting one teacher with
a donation of $5,000. We are currently working to bring 50
additional corps members to Miami-Dade. To schedule a date
and time to visit, or to learn more about ways you can get
involved, contact John Crary at 786.245.8407 or John.Crary@
TeachForAmerica.org. To sponsor a teacher, contact Rebecca
Fishman Lipsey 305.389.1135 or Rebecca.FishmanLipsey@
TeachForAmerica.org. To nominate someone you feel deserves to be featured as a
HERO on this page, please email a photo, short bio and contact
information to Editor@KeyBiscayneMag.com.