Industry: Education
Type of Internship: Education: Teaching/Training/Lesson Planning
Student Name: Angelie Heredia
Graduation Year: 2020
Major: Child Study and Human Development, Cognitive and Brain Sciences
Minor: None
Position Title: Teaching Fellow
Hours: 48 hours per week
Paid or Unpaid: Unpaid but receiving Career Center grant, full-time

What do you do as an intern at this organization?

My tasks as a Teaching Fellow range far beyond teaching in a classroom. In addition to leading two 6th grade math courses of 10 students each, I also developed two elective dance courses of about 12 students each and co-lead one advisory/homeroom class of approximately 15 students. My position also requires that I advise four students whom I support through one-on-one and group activities/conversations that help to build relationships. As a math teacher, I routinely coordinate with a math department to tailor lesson plans to individual classrooms’ needs. All of the Teaching Fellows received an intensive two week training session, after which we began daily coaching sessions from professional teachers to build upon our skills inside and outside of the classroom. Lastly, I help to organize faculty bonding events and outings to maintain upbeat attitudes amongst fellow teachers.

How did you find this internship?

Friend referral

What do you enjoy most about your internship?

One of the focuses of the two-week training session was building community amongst the Teaching Fellows; as a result, I formed great relationships with my coworkers and will be sad to say goodbye at the end of the program. With regards to the students, I have enjoyed meeting many of them, even though their behaviors are often hard to manage. My happiest moments in the program have been when the students in my class have been engaged in, and genuinely enjoyed, the classwork.

What do you find challenging?

The first few weeks of the program were very frustrating. Because we spent so much time bonding during training, we left actual classroom preparations for the very last day — needless to say, I was very stressed. Once the teaching actually began, many of the teachers were frustrated by the little support (especially with regards to managing difficult behaviors) we received from the Leadership Team in comparison to what we had expected.

What advice would you offer to someone who wants to make the most of an internship like yours?

For someone interested in an internship similar to mine, I would advice them to acknowledge that jobs (and coworkers) are not always what we expect them to be. There will likely be many occasions when you do not agree with an organization's ideals or problem-solving methods. I have found that having honest conversations with my superiors (which may or may not be appropriate, depending on the job setting/atmosphere) about why my beliefs do not align with theirs is helpful. However, there will be times when you have to let things go, so choose your battles.

About the Organization

Generation Teach
Holyoke, Massachusetts

Generation Teach is a national nonprofit organization that places high school and undergraduate students in local communities to help prospective educators from diverse backgrounds become exceptional teachers and leaders. The teachers are intentionally chosen to reflect the communities they work in; 75 percent of Teaching Fellows (TFs) are people of color, 60 percent of TFs identify as Black and/or Latino, 75 percent of TFs are local, and 40 percent are first generation. Teaching Fellows complete 40 to 60 hours of individual teaching experience for 5 to 6 weeks, in addition to 2 weeks of intensive training (prior to meeting and teaching the students) and daily coaching from professional teachers throughout the summer. The goal of Generation Teach is to help students develop academically in a fun environment, while simultaneously helping young professionals realize their career aspirations.