"As a first-generation college student who succeeded through a love of reading and writing, I felt impassioned and inspired to leverage my own fire for literacy." -Mike Cress.
May 3, 2016
Mike Cress (’11), Atlanta, GA
Chelsea Public Schools, Principal Intern
Harvard Graduate School of Education, Ed.M Candidate
Why did you join TFA: As a first-generation college student who succeeded through a love of reading and writing, I felt impassioned and inspired to leverage my own fire for literacy and to empower kids in similarly disadvantaged circumstances from within the ELA classroom.
Favorite TFA Memory: One of my most struggling students left school indefinitely to go home to Cuba, and asked me if he had any homework on his last day. Sarcastically, I remarked, "no, just send me a postcard," thinking he wouldn't remember any homework. Weeks later, he returned, and while in Cuba, he had a post-card custom sketched and drawn that read "To Mr. Cress, from Cuba" and had an inkwell and a pen on it, which represented the reading and writing we did in my class. That day changed my heart, my soul, and my life.
How has TFA impacted you: Even coming into TFA with a teaching license and a background in education, TFA provided me with a social justice and educational equity lens that has been indispensably critical to my experiences and successes. Without it, I wouldn't be the leader I am today.
College Attended: Harvard Graduate School of Education (Ed.M); Marietta College (B.A.)
Community Activities: QueerEd; Hillary For America; Harvard Graduate School of Education Student Council; Harvard Graduate School of Education Admissions Ambassador