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InSPIRED Fellowship Application 2018-2019

InSPIRED Fellowship Application 2018-2019

***UPDATE*** The application deadline for the InSPIRED Fellowship has been extended. Please submit your applications by 11:59 pm, Sunday, December 16, 2018.

Become an InSPIRED* Fellow!

The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) is now accepting applications for the inaugural cohort of InSPIRED Fellows! This highly-selective opportunity is for current teachers with close connections to their school-communities and the ability to connect with students in target districts, to recruit the next generation of diverse, effective teachers. This Fellowship is designed around two goals:
  • Increase the diversity of the teaching workforce in Massachusetts. To do this, 40 Fellows will each:
    • Host recruitment events with over 100 students in priority districts
    • Engage in targeted follow-up with at least 20 students
    • Activate a network of supports and resources for interested students in pursuing various pathways into the profession
  • Increase the retention rates of current educators committed to a diverse workforce. To do this, the Fellowship is structured to:
    • Create a network of like-minded, committed teachers that can persist beyond the Fellowship period
    • Provide a prestigious opportunity for current teachers
Applications close on December 13, 2018. Apply to be an InSPIRED Fellow today!

Important details about the opportunity:

Selected Fellows will:
  • Run at least 5 “recruitment events” to attract students within target communities to become teachers
  • Connect with roughly 100 students to share their passion for the profession
  • Follow up with targeted outreach to at least 20 students interested in pursuing a path to teaching; serve as an informal mentor and contact to interested individuals
  • Participate in the Fellow community, comprised of other Fellows from both within your district and throughout the state, to launch, learn from, and reflect on the experience
Supporting the Fellowship, DESE will:
  • Coordinate, with input from the Fellows, all recruitment events
  • Host a launch event and end-of-fellowship celebration
  • Track data and outreach about reach of the Fellows and provide one-on-one support and guidance
  • Provide all marketing and informational materials Fellows need to communicate effectively about pathways into the profession
The Fellowship is for six months with all efforts to be completed between January and June 2019. In return for their commitment, Fellows will receive a $1,500 stipend.

Why become a Fellow?
All students benefit from engaging with diverse teachers and leaders throughout their schooling experience.[1] For example, studies show that students of color who have even one teacher of color during their early schooling are more likely to do well in school and more likely to complete high school and aspire to attend a four-year college.[2] Currently, 92 percent of the teaching workforce is white, while 40 percent of students across the Commonwealth are students of color. DESE is hoping to elevate the voices of current teachers who can leverage on-the-ground community connections to more strategically recruit and incentivize young people into teaching, particularly individuals from groups underrepresented in the profession.

Who should become a Fellow?
Teachers in these target districts are encouraged to apply: Boston, Brockton, Chelsea, Everett, Holyoke, Lawrence, Lowell, Lynn, Randolph, Revere, Springfield, and Worcester.

We are specifically looking for teachers who are closely connected to these targeted communities. These connections may exist for a variety of reasons, including, for instance: growing up in the district, being a fluent speaker of the predominant in-home language of many of the students in that community, or being a first-generation college student. DESE hopes to select a diverse cohort of Fellows who can leverage their own personal story about entering and staying in the profession in order to cultivate interest from students in these target districts.  

InSPIRED Fellows are In-Service Professionals who are committed to Increasing the Racial and Ethnic Diversity of our teacher workforce. InSPIRED Fellows can speak compellingly about their own pathway into and passion for the teaching profession. Fellows are invested in closing gaps in achievement and opportunity, so that all students, particularly those who have been underrepresented in the education profession, are prepared for success. In support of this, we are looking for Fellows who:
  • Can serve effectively as mentors for students interested in pursuing teaching
  • Have strong interpersonal skills; are personable and easy to connect with both in larger and one-on-one settings
  • Care deeply about their students and are constantly working to improve their own effectiveness to support student success
  • Are deeply invested in the community in which they teach
  • Are solutions-oriented, persistent, and goal-driven
  • Are early- to mid-career professionals (between 2-10 years of experience)
In addition to the work of the Fellowship, Fellows commit to attending and participating in events on the following days:
  • Saturday, January 12th (all day)
  • Wednesday, March 20th (virtual check-in from 3:00 – 5:00pm)
  • Thursday, June 6th (evening)

DESE is working to establish articulated support for Fellows in each of the priority districts. This may or may not include support for release time needed to carry out Fellowship commitments. Please contact for more information.

*InSPIRED: In-Service Professionals Increasing Racial and Ethnic Diversity

You may save and return to your application at any time.

Click here to view a pdf of the full application. Applicants must apply online to be considered.

[1] Sebastian Cherng, Hua-Yu, and Peter F. Halpin. “The Importance of Minority Teachers: Student Perceptions of Minority Versus White Teachers.” Educational Researcher 45, no. 7 (October 2016): 407–20. doi:10.3102/0013189X16671718.
[2] Gershenson, Seth, Cassandra M.D Hart, Constance A. Lindsay, and Nicholas W. Papageorge. "IZA DP No. 10630: The Long-Run Impacts of Same-Race Teachers." IZA – Institute of Labor Economics, March 2017.