Launched originally in 2000 as Smith’s Urban Education Initiative, the Education Initiative exists to connect Smith to a critical movement in education and American society: the promise of education as the prime lever for social mobility, well-being and positive social change. Three core programs operationalize the Education Initiative’s vision and strategy: The Smith College Mindich Teaching Fellowship, Project Coach and Community-Engaged Scholarship & Research. The work of the Education Initiative is supported by Propel Capital & the Jandon Foundation.
About the Education Initiative
The Smith College Mindich Teaching Fellowship
The Smith College Mindich Teaching Fellowship introduces students from Smith and other liberal arts colleges to the unique challenges of classroom teaching and its power to change the course of a child’s life. The program integrates best practices of university-based teacher education and school-based teaching practica during the one-month apprenticeship. Over the past 20 years, the program has advanced a diverse cohort of Smith students on pathways that have led to urban teaching and education-centered careers. Many aspects of the program are made possible through generous funding honoring the legacy of Dan Mindich, a high school English teacher and lifetime educator who loved teaching and learning. Smith students will be named Mindich Fellows—a title that honors Dan’s belief that students benefit the most when teachers work in communities where they learn together and support each other.
Read the Grécourt Gate article: Julie Destine ’21: Finding Her Place in the Classroom, a 2019–20 Mindich Fellow who reflects on her experience in the fellowship, which included four weeks of teaching in a New York City classroom, and how it has shaped her thinking about her future and career.
About the Fellowship
The Smith College Mindich Teaching Fellowship provides an opportunity to engage deeply in the practice and lived experience of teaching in schools. This immersive experience (in person during J-Term 2024) links current Smith students to a network of Smith alums and teacher-mentors working on the leading edge of school reform. Upon completion, you’ll join a unique community of nearly 1,000 Fellowship alums working in schools across the nation and around the world. Many aspects of the program are made possible through generous funding honoring the legacy of Dan Mindich, a high school English teacher and lifetime educator who loved teaching and learning. Smith students will be named Mindich Fellows – a title that honors Dan’s belief that students benefit the most when teachers work in communities where they learn together and support each other.
The Mindich Fellowship occurs through participation in two Smith College classes: 1-credit practicum placement with one of our trusted school partners nationwide (may be repeated for credit) and a 3-credit seminar with Professor Sam Intrator (optional). Mandatory Orientation Sessions: Thursday, November 30th 5-7:30 p.m. and Thursday, December 7th, 5-6:30 p.m.
Interested? Next Steps:
- Complete the Mindich Fellowship application by Friday, November 10th @ 11:59 p.m. This is a competitive opportunity. No extensions will be offered.
- If accepted, we will help you register for EDC 298 (Interterm): Rethinking Leadership & Policy Practicum (1 credit)
- If accepted, we will help you register for EDC 299 (Spring): Rethinking Leadership & Policy for Tomorrow’s World (3 credits). Mondays 3:30-6 p.m.
Point of Contact: Laura Boban, Education Initiative Coordinator, firstname.lastname@example.org
Project Coach Voices
Project Coach Fellows have gone on to serve as teachers, to create after-school programs and schools, and to work in education policy around the world. For example, Michael Carter, a Springfield, Massachusetts local and 2013 Project Coach Fellow, went on to work as a teacher and administrator at KIPP schools, and then as education director of a California-based out-of-school-time program. He recently returned to KIPP in Oklahoma City as a Fisher Fellow and founding school leader for KIPP OKC Elementary School.