Why I Applied to HGSE’s Teacher Education Program

Thinking of becoming a teacher? Here’s why the Teacher Education Program (TEP) was a good fit for me:

  1. Our program begins in the summer, so we had a few months with TEP-only classes and the campus to ourselves!
  2. TEP allows me to earn a master’s degree and Massachusetts teacher licensure in 11 months.
  3. Our coursework is nicely balanced between teaching and learning, and our responsibility in the classroom ramps up slowly. We help teach in a local summer school, teach with a mentor at a local school for two days a week in the fall, and then take over teaching in that classroom for the spring term. Meanwhile, I am taking other Harvard classes through the summer and fall.
  4. We are allowed to cross-register for classes at several of the Harvard Schools (including the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Law School, etc.) as well as certain classes at MIT or the Tufts Fletcher School.
  5. We get to take 3+ electives in addition to required coursework. This allows me to follow my own academic interests in a way that some other licensure/master’s programs don’t allow. For example, I’m an English teacher, so I was excited to be able to take an American Literature class!
  6. I have three – count ’em – mentors/advisors. It’s rare that I have to ask for support as those structures are already in place!
  7. HGSE is really welcoming for diverse learning styles and many of us are supported by the Access & Disability Services  office.
  8. Our cohort is only 25 students, so we are a relatively close-knit crew. We get together for anything from Halloween parties to trivia nights to football tailgates.
    TEP '16
    Some of the TEP ’16 cohort at a weekend BBQ

    Mary Reid Munford is a Master’s of Education candidate in the Teacher Education Program, pursuing licensure as a high school English teacher. She has worked in schools in New Orleans, Mississippi, Colorado, and southern Africa and is interested in how experiential education can make academics come alive for a wide range of students.