Madeline Cohen '16

Teacher Prep has put me on a path to fulfill Princeton's stated mission to be "in the service of humanity." Teacher Prep's mix of theory and practice was the perfect way to get started in a teaching career while also being prepared for related careers like social work, which I intend to pursue with a focus on children and youth.

After graduating, I spent one year teaching English/Language Arts, English as a Second/Additional Language and Drama to grade 6 - 9 students at an international school in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Following this, I moved to Berkeley, California where I have been working for 1.5 years at a non-profit that supports the education of foster youth in Bay Area middle and high schools. The organization is called SOAR for Youth. During the last 6 months I've been the Manager of Academic Services and most recently I've applied to programs to obtain a Masters in Social Work to deepen my abilities to work with vulnerable youth.

One of my favorite things about being in Teacher Prep, especially doing my student teaching during my senior spring, was having a clear purpose and structure to my days as a college senior. While so many of my peers were worn down by thesis deadlines or figuring out next steps in their careers, I was energized by my teaching duties every day and felt much more secure in my path to an interesting and important career.

The advice I'd like to give to current and future TPP students is "Use. Online. Resources! And become part of online teaching communities! Even though I am not a classroom teacher currently, I still follow a bunch of teachers on Instagram and teaching groups on Facebook because they are such vibrant communities full of lesson plan ideas, collaboration, and encouragement. It can feel like you need to reinvent the wheel if you are put in a teaching situation, like I was, where there is not a set curriculum and little mentorship. I was SAVED by online resources and communities."

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