Skip to main content

Teach For America Receives $25,000 Grant from Truist Foundation to Support Teacher Development in Central Florida

The $25,000 grant from Truist Foundation will go toward supporting and developing Teach For America alumni teachers and education leaders who work in schools and classrooms across Central Florida

By Courtney Salazar

September 1, 2021

ORLANDO, TAMPA - [September 01, 2021]— Teach For America today announced they received a $25,000 grant from Truist Foundation to help support the recruitment, placement, training and ongoing development of alumni educators in Title I, high-need schools across Central Florida. In a statement regarding the partnership, LaKeisha Wells-Palmer, executive director of Teach For America regions across Florida stated the following:

“Significant progress has been made with regards to educational outcomes in Central Florida, and there are still gaps for our students across lines of racial and economic background. This $25,000 grant from Truist Foundation will accelerate the educational progress that’s already occurring and help affect positive change in student outcomes on a systemic level. To create true systematic change, we will collectively work toward our top priorities of growing impactful talent and maximizing student outcomes. We are committed to recruiting and developing a transformational injection of leadership talent into Central Florida's educational landscape, and this grant from Truist Foundation will ensure that we are able to do just that.”

With Truist Foundation grant funds, Teach For America (TFA) will recruit and place eight veteran, high performing, TFA alumni educators who have committed to coming to Florida to work in Central Florida's highest need schools as part of an inaugural Alumni Fellowship program. The fellowship will provide experienced teachers with targeted skill development and reflection that will take their teaching practice to the next level. Their development will be focused on: building high quality, diverse and culturally responsive classrooms; navigating power and advancing classroom and school systems change; and understanding and reimagining more equitable education systems. Alumni will come from all across the country and already have an average of 3-4 years of successful classroom experience. As part of the fellowship, alumni will participate in rigorous development to support them in achieving exemplary student outcomes.

“With a growing alumni base across the state of Florida, we are so excited to support passionate and courageous Teach For America alumni teachers and school leaders in Central Florida. We believe this thriving network has the potential to breathe new life and unity into the movement for educational equity and create impactful change for the trajectory of students.” stated Leah Palestrant, Teach For America’s director of alumni strategy for Florida regions.

The Truist Foundation grant will fuel Teach For America’s efforts toward reaching their ambitious 10-year goal:  By 2030, twice as many children in communities where we work will reach key educational milestones indicating they are on a path to economic mobility and co-creating a future filled with possibility.

“At Truist our purpose is to inspire and build better lives and communities, and this partnership is about promoting educational opportunity for Central Florida’s youth,” said Sandy Hostetter, Truist’s Central Florida regional president, on behalf of the Truist Foundation.


About Teach For America

Teach For America works in partnership with 350 urban and rural communities across the country to expand educational opportunity for children. Founded in 1990, Teach For America recruits and develops a diverse corps of outstanding leaders who make an initial two-year commitment to teach in high-need schools and become lifelong leaders in the effort to end educational inequity. Today, Teach For America is a force of over 64,000 alumni and corps members working in over 9,000 schools nationwide in pursuit of profound systemic change. From classrooms to districts to state houses across America, they are reimagining education to realize the day when every child has an equal opportunity to learn, lead, thrive, and co-create a future filled with possibility. Teach For America is a proud member of the AmeriCorps national service network. For more information, visit and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.


About Truist Foundation

The Truist Foundation is committed to Truist Financial Corporation’s (NYSE: TFC) purpose to inspire and build better lives and communities. Established in 2020, the foundation makes strategic investments in nonprofit organizations to help ensure the communities it serves have more opportunities for a better quality of life. The Truist Foundation’s grants and activities focus on leadership development, economic mobility, thriving communities and educational equity. Learn more at



Contact: Courtney Salazar

Contact: Audria Belton