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Finding My Role in the New York City Alumni Movement

Jeniffer Montaño (New York ‘15) finds a meaningful way to reconnect with her community, alumni teachers, and the broader alumni base by joining the NY Alumni Association Board.

By Jeniffer Montaño

May 4, 2018

As a member of Teach For America, I often wonder what role I should play within it. As an active corps member, the answer was clear. I was an educator supporting TFA with its mission to provide a quality education for all. After I completed my two years of service, I started to disconnect myself from TFA and struggled to find my place within the mission.

Last October, as I was skimming over TFA-NY’s monthly newsletter, a headline caught my eye:  “New TFA-NY Alumni Association Board Elections”. I dismissed the post, shrugged my shoulders, closed the email and placed my mouse over the trashcan icon. As I was about to erase the email, an idea popped into my head: What if I was to join the board? Would it matter? Would I be able to re-connect to TFA and elevate my voice as a third-year teacher?”

I returned to the email, read the directions, added the election date to my calendar and drafted my aspirations for the board role. I wanted to connect the community, alumni teachers, and the broader alumni base, in a way that supports educators and continues to propel TFA’s vision forward.

Six months later, I am an active member of the TFA-NY Alumni Association and the co-creator, along with Kadeem Gill (New York ‘11) of our blog series featuring TFA alumni each month. I feel reconnected and am proud to be sharing my voice with all of you. I hope to give special attention to the topics that are important to alumni so that our unstoppable network of talent can rally behind the issues that matter most.

The association has showed me that behind the name, Teach for America – New York, people are working to engage everyone of us who share a commitment to high quality education for all student. As alumni, our voices matter!  Let’s work together to create the spaces we need in order to continue to propel this work forward. I urge all alumni to share your ideas Complete this survey!