Teach For America Founder to Speak at Baccalaureate Service

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Publication Date: 4/18/2007

Wendy Kopp, president and founder of Teach For America, will deliver the address for Rhodes College’s Baccalaureate Service on May 11. In her book, One Day, All Children: The Unlikely Triumph of Teach For America and What I Learned Along the Way, Kopp describes how she created and built Teach For America, the national corps of college graduates who commit two years to teach in urban and rural public schools and become lifelong leaders in pursuit of educational excellence and equity.

The Baccalaureate Service for the 158th Session of Rhodes College will be held at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church located at 70 N. Bellevue Blvd. The Academic Procession begins at 3:00 p.m. with a signer interpreting the service for the hearing impaired. Rhodes President William E. Troutt will preside over the service.

Kopp holds a bachelor′s degree from Princeton University and proposed the creation of Teach For America in her undergraduate senior thesis in 1989. At the Rhodes Commencement on May 12, Kopp will receive the Honorary Doctor of Humanities degree.  In 1994, TIME magazine recognized her as one of the 40 most promising leaders under 40. In 2006, she was named one of America’s best leaders by US News and World Report.

Teach For America established its Memphis region last summer and chose Rhodes College as its training site. The 2006-2007 school year includes 4,400 corps members reaching approximately 375,000 students.