MACON – Mercer rising senior Geneis Crimé was recently offered early admission into the Teach For America (TFA) corps and will serve as the University’s first-ever TFA Ambassador during the upcoming academic year.
“I was thrilled to learn of Geneis’ acceptance to Teach For America, but not at all surprised,” said Dr. Laura Simon, assistant professor of sociology in Mercer’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. “Geneis is talented, bright, hardworking and resilient. One of her many strengths is her ability to understand and unpack the nuances of complex social issues. I know Geneis is committed to channeling that knowledge into solutions-based work that helps to improve the lives of others. I am confident she will be a great asset to the TFA program, using her personal and academic background to make a positive impact as both a TFA teacher and ambassador.”
Crimé, from Dacula, is a criminal justice, sociology and Spanish triple-major.
Following graduation from Mercer, she will begin a two-year commitment to TFA to teach middle-school bilingual education in San Antonio, Texas.
“Receiving this opportunity means paying my blessings forward. Growing up in the less-than-satisfactory public school system of the Bronx, New York, I have personally been a victim to educational inequality, and I would love nothing more than to be a part of the active engagement toward improvement in this area,” said Crimé.
“I wasn’t given a real chance at quality education until my family moved to Georgia. My teachers inspired me to take advantage of what I did have available to me and pursue my dreams full force, regardless of the circumstances in which I found myself. For this reason, I know the impact that an understanding, supportive adult figure can have on a child’s life chances. I’m grateful I get to help bridge this gap for the children of these underserved communities.”
According to Teach for America, San Antonio has 17 different school districts, rather than a single traditional school district, with barriers between these districts formed due to inequitable systems that separated communities by race and class. Pew Research Center identifies San Antonio as the most economically segregated city in the U.S.
TFA reports that while 99% of the new jobs created in Texas since 2008 require postsecondary education, only 6% of students graduating high school in San Antonio’s urban core are college-ready. The school district in the heart of the city serves a 97% Latino and African American student body with 93% of those students coming from economically disadvantaged households.
Over the past five years, Teach For America has brought more than 500 teachers to work in San Antonio’s inner city, and the city is currently home to more than 350 TFA alumni.
Following her two-year commitment to TFA, Crimé plans to pursue a graduate or law degree that will allow her to follow her passion to seek social justice for marginalized individuals who are largely forgotten in society, such as children, people of color and immigrants.
While at Mercer, she has served as a hospitality and care intern at The Wesley Foundation of Macon; recruitment chair of Sigma Sigma Rho Sorority Inc.; a member of Phi Eta Sigma, Omicron Delta Kappa, Alpha Phi Sigma and Alpha Kappa Delta honor societies; treasurer of the Spanish Club; a study abroad peer adviser; and media secretary for Student Government Association. She has received the Gilman Scholarship, Hiliary Echo Douglas Memorial Scholarship and been recognized on the President’s and Dean’s lists.
Her role as a Teach For America Ambassador during her senior year will allow her to champion the work of the organization through networking, outreach, marketing, social media, presentations and events in order to introduce students to opportunities within the TFA corps.
About Teach For America
Teach For America works in partnership with 350 urban and rural communities across the country to expand educational opportunity for children. Founded in 1990, Teach For America recruits and develops a diverse corps of outstanding leaders who make an initial two-year commitment to teach in high-need schools and become lifelong leaders in the effort to end educational inequity. Today, Teach For America is a force of over 64,000 alumni and corps members working in over 9,000 schools nationwide in pursuit of profound systemic change. From classrooms to districts to state houses across America, they are reimagining education to realize the day when every child has an equal opportunity to learn, lead, thrive, and co-create a future filled with possibility. Teach For America is a proud member of the AmeriCorps national service network.
About the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Mercer University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences serves as the academic cornerstone of one of America’s oldest and most distinctive institutions of higher learning. The oldest and largest of Mercer’s 12 schools and colleges, it is a diverse and vibrant community, enrolling more than 1,900 students, dedicated to learning and service through the practice of intellectual curiosity, respectful dialogue and responsible citizenry. The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences offers majors in more than 30 areas of study, including more than a dozen pre-professional academic tracks, with classes taught by an outstanding faculty of scholars. In 2015, Mercer was awarded a chapter of The Phi Beta Kappa Society, the nation’s most prestigious academic honor society that recognizes exceptional achievement in the arts and sciences. For more information, visit liberalarts.mercer.edu.