GSE Program Specialized to Prepare Educators for Urban Areas


When Dr. Beth Rubin arrived at the Graduate School of Education (GSE) in 2001, there wasn’t a course on urban education. After developing and teaching a course for a few years, she and Dr. Thea Abu El-Haj saw the need for a program that provides extra support for GSE student’s that want to become urban educators. Five years ago they started the program Urban Teaching Fellows (UTF), a specialization to which GSE Ed.M. students may apply to during the fall semester of their first year.

Admitted fellows begin with coursework in urban education in the spring semester. This course focuses on the issues educators and students in urban communities face and on the tools available to address these issues.  The fellows follow a cohort model that allows them to take the classes and meet with the same group of GSE students over the course of the program. This cohort model encourages support through reflecting with each other on the specific issues they face. 

Fellows have the opportunity to work in the same school for three semesters. This begins when they observe classes and do research projects in the urban school at which they will student-teach the following semester.  Working in the school prior to their student-teaching internship allows the fellows to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the community and develop their curriculum based on the assessment.

During the fall semester, fellows student-teach full-time and also have the opportunity to attend special professional-development workshops that focus on practical methods and reflective analysis. The program coordinator also visits the fellows at their schools providing additional support and mentorship.

Fellows return to their school during their final spring semester to run an innovative after-school program called Youth in Action. The program aims to train students of the urban schools to participate in civic action research in their own school and community. Youth in Action gives young students the ability to look for solutions to the problems that they believe affect their local schools and communities.

Through this program, GSE students are able to pursue a fulfilling career as an educator in urban areas. Through the formal and informal support structures offered throughout the program, graduates enter the workforce prepared to help students receive a fulfilling education.

To learn more about the program visit their webpage

Apply to the program by Friday, October 25, 2013. Click here to apply online