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What You Can Expect: Teach For America's 2017 Application and Placement Process

Learn more about the streamlined application to join our 2017 corps.

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Thursday, July 28, 2016

This Monday, we’ll launch the application for Teach For America’s 2017 corps. I can’t wait.

I’m thrilled for you to begin exploring the impact you can make through Teach For America. And I’m thrilled for the students, families, and schools across our 53 regional sites and beyond who will benefit from the talent, partnership, and lifelong advocacy of the 2017 corps. We’re focused on bringing the most remarkable, diverse leaders of your generation into the effort to expand opportunity for all.

Anyone who knows Teach For America knows we are obsessed with learning, innovating, and improving constantly. Having listened to feedback from applicants and testing new ideas through pilots, we’ve evolved our application process to be more intuitive, timely, and applicant-driven.

The high stakes of our work with students and our distinctive approach to leadership development calls for maintaining a rigorous selection model and process. So, what’s not changing is the selectivity of our program and standards for admission—including the unique mix of leadership experience, achievement, and commitment to equity and social impact that we look for in applicants.

Read on to learn more about the shifts we’ve made this year. If you’re thinking about applying, you can visit the How to Apply page and sign up to receive a notification when the 2017 application opens next week. 

  • A Faster and More Intuitive Application. We’ve redesigned the application to take under two hours to complete, with the introduction of a simple resume drop and a single, short-answer essay.

  • Direct Route to Final Interview. You’ll move to the final round interview faster, with fewer steps.  

  • Shorter Decision Timeline. You’ll receive an admissions decision nearly three weeks earlier. We’ve aligned the timing of our decision windows with important campus events (e.g., final exams, winter break) as well as other employers’ timelines, to enable you to make a fully informed decision about the options before you, including TFA.

  • Applicant-Driven Regional Placement. You’ll have more time and support in determining which of our 53 regions is right for you. Previously, regional preferences were part of our application. In our new process, this step happens after you’re admitted to the corps. Once you're admitted, you will have the opportunity to research and select your preferred regions on the Applicant Center.

Your generation has a tremendous amount to bring to our students, our communities, and to the broader fight for equity and opportunity in our country. I look forward to meeting you and supporting you in exploring Teach For America as the place to launch a career of meaning and impact.  

To apply, visit TeachForAmerica.org.

Sean Waldheim is the vice president of admissions at Teach For America. He was a 2000 Greater New Orleans–Louisiana Delta corps member and joined Teach For America’s staff in 2002.

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