Page 1


2020 PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS OUR MISSION The Institute for Recruitment of Teachers (IRT) addresses the lack of diversity in the nation’s teaching faculties by recruiting outstanding college students of color and other scholars committed to diversity, counseling them through the graduate school application process, and advocating for sufficient funding for advanced study.

The pandemic prompted significant changes to the delivery of the IRT program. Although our in-person Summer Workshop was cancelled for the first time in 30 years, we still were able to support 130 students in vital ways—thanks to the hard work and tremendous collaboration of faculty, staff, and alumni. Together, we reshaped our program in several key areas:

 VIRTUAL RECRUITMENT—The difficult decision was made early on to forego in-person recruitment travel and pivot to virtual recruiting events and webinars. This, in fact, furthered our efforts to connect with students across a variety of backgrounds.

 A MORE ROBUST ADVISING MODEL—From recruitment through matriculation, the IRT advising process

OUTCOMES More than 1,000 IRT alumni have gone on to earn master’s degrees in the humanities, social sciences, or education; an additional 368 have earned doctorates.

IMPACT IRT graduates have enjoyed remarkable success securing jobs as K–12 teachers, counselors, principals, and superintendents as well as school psychologists, professors, university administrators, and leaders in

was expanded to include more frequent student check-ins by IRT advisors, additional supportive content from our consortium partners, and ramped up alumni engagement and mentorship.

 AMPLIFIED ALUMNI ENGAGEMENT—IRT alumni at various phases in their careers were matched to current students, newly matriculated students, and the greater IRT community, enabling a natural exchange of ideas, personal experiences, and positive energy.

 COMPASSIONATE OUTREACH—IRT advisors aimed to “meet students where they are”—often outside of the usual scope of our program. This added support and encouragement helped those most seriously affected by COVID-19 remain focused on their goals.

 COLLABORATION WITH CONSORTIUM PARTNERS—Many college and university deans demonstrated

education. They serve as positive role models and

their commitment to IRT students by hosting informational sessions and helping to demystify and

mentors to students of all races and ethnicities.

decode the graduate school experience in the context of these challenging times.

Visit to learn more about the IRT and its impact.



Advanced degrees earned by alumni

total IRT alumni to date

LASHAWNDA BROOKS Executive Director

During this unfathomable year, the



PhD degrees

Terminal master’s degrees

IRT staff applauds the commitment and perseverance of educators. As tough a year as it has been, we have found joy in supporting our current

(highest degree awarded in a given field)

Top PhD degree–granting fields pursued by alumni

IRT cohort as they seek to become


influencers in education, support their communities, and engage with this work in unprecedented times. Our alumni in classrooms and educational spaces across the world have found ways to support students from K–12 to the professoriate; we could not be prouder of the work you do.”

Graduate school admissions—Class of 2019



accepted to at least 1 graduate school program

accepted to 4 or more graduate school programs

A first-generation graduate of the University of Virginia, LaShawnda Brooks launched her career in education in the classroom with Teach For America. She then spent nearly a decade in earning an MS in education policy from the University of Pennsylvania. Based on her own life experiences, Brooks views teacher diversity as imperative to educational excellence.

My participation in the IRT as

nonprofit programming and management before



receiving partial to full funding

receiving full funding

both associate and alumni advisor helped me see—and renew my commitment to—the work that continues to be necessary in education and racial inquiry.”

—Hannah Kim, IRT ’13

“The IRT has influenced my pedagogy, inspired my mentorship

DR. TIFFANY JOSEPH, IRT ’03 Assoc. Professor of Sociology and International Affairs, Northeastern University

of students, and shaped my research on marginalized communities. I see

my teaching—particularly on race and racism, as well as on broader domestic and international social issues—as directly contributing to racial

Dr. Shenora Plenty, IRT ’10

equity. By incorporating the work of scholars


who are people of color, women, and from

As a proud IRT associate, I believe that participating in the

interrupting institutional bias and barriers, particularly for

personal lived experiences with course content.

IRT program enabled me to pursue higher education at

students of color.

two prestigious universities. The support I received from my advisors—from countless hours of editing when writing my statement of purpose to GRE support to networking opportunities with several top-tiered institutions of learning—was invaluable. The staff believed in me, pushed me out of my comfort zone, and provided me with access to opportunities that I now seek to provide daily to my scholars. Exposure to these endless possibilities can lead to a life beyond what they could ever imagine! In January 2020 [see photo], the Wheatley Education Campus, where I serve as principal, received the DC Public Schools’ Standing Ovation Award for Commitment to Equity. This award recognizes our dedication to ensuring that equity is at the forefront of our instructional decisions, to eradicating opportunity gaps, and to systemically

around the world in my syllabi, I hope to provide opportunities for students to connect their

“My aim is to spark intellectual curiosity that

At Wheaton EC, we believe in educating and nurturing

encourages students to be the social change

the whole child. For us, that means cultivating a school

they want to see in the world, to dismantle

environment where every child feels loved, respected,

racism and other -isms within their spheres of

and understood from the moment they walk in the door.

influence. I use a similar approach in mentoring

Foundational to that work is our staff commitment to

undergraduate and graduate students,

further exploring our identities as educators and our role in

especially those who are Black and Latinx, and

both perpetuating and overcoming inequities. To do that,

I try to be a model of an academic who uses

we seek to engage in open dialogue about race, equity, and

research to draw attention to—and hopefully

privilege and to recognize and value differences among staff.

improve—inequities based on race, ethnicity,

Without a doubt, the IRT’s commitment to students of color is helping to promote racial equity, paving the way for those from diverse backgrounds, and providing the necessary access and resources to ensure success. I am forever grateful for my experience with the IRT.

Dr. Shenora Plenty, pictured above at the table, is in her fourth year as principal of Wheatley Education Campus in Washington, D.C. She earned a BA in early childhood education and a master’s in curriculum and instruction at Boston College, and a doctorate in educational leadership at the University of Southern California.

and documentation status. My research, which focuses on how the intersection of race and documentation status shapes health-care access and policy implications for communities of color, is driven by my desire to generate social change and achieve racial equity.” A 2000 graduate of Phillips Academy and 2004 graduate of Brown University, Dr. Tiffany Joseph earned a master’s degree (2007) and PhD (2011) from the University of Michigan–Ann Arbor. She currently serves on Andover’s Anti-Racism Task Force.

Looking Back, Looking Ahead The Institute for Recruitment of Teachers was founded in 1990 by Phillips Academy English instructor Kelly Wise, who then served as executive director for 23 years. Initially a pilot summer program, the IRT today offers robust year-round guidance and support to students


pursuing graduate degrees. As we celebrate our 30-year history, we take

great pride in our accomplished alumni and dedicated staff. As we look forward, we see that there is still much work to be done—and we embrace that challenge.

Ryan Sermon, IRT ’10

ALUMNUS Q&A HOW HAS YOUR PARTICIPATION IN THE IRT INFLUENCED YOUR WORK IN EDUCATION? Since my admission into the IRT program, I have been fortunate to complete my dream graduate master’s program [in 2013] in a setting that I never imagined was possible—the beautiful Sonoran southwest—at the University of Arizona in Tucson. Prior to the IRT, my educational lens was mainly focused on higher education and student affairs. However, through a wide-reaching

IRT Consortium Universities

and intentional network of educational scholars affiliated with the IRT, I broadened my scope of critical issues

HOW IS THE IRT ADVANCING THE FIGHT FOR RACIAL EQUITY IN EDUCATION AND AT LARGE? The United States continues to grow in population, age, and diversity.


University of New Hampshire

Michigan State University (School of Education)

University of Pennsylvania

Northwestern University

University of Rochester

Purdue University

University of Vermont


University of Chicago

Yale University

Bound program, I holistically support first-generation,

America’s multicultural society. The very ethos of the IRT

University of Michigan


low-income, and disabled students to accomplish

combats educational and racial inequity.

Duke University

their goals of attending a college or university. During

Emory University

workshop sessions they engage in activities that encourage

University of Notre Dame University of Wisconsin–Madison Washington University in St. Louis

University of Rhode Island

George Washington University


University of Maryland– College Park

Boston College

University of Virginia

Boston University

Vanderbilt University

Brandeis University


Brown University Columbia University Cornell University

Rice University University of Arizona

throughout the P-20 educational landscape.

them to reflect on their strengths, skills, and interests and apply those attributes to potential programs of study and future career opportunities. I am very intentional and purposeful about these reflection and research exercises because of my knowledge of financial aid timeframe restrictions for those who have taken too many credits or changed their major numerous times.

By recruiting and supporting emerging leaders in the industry who are seeking graduate school admission, the IRT is helping to embrace educators who will reflect

WHY AND HOW DO YOU SUPPORT CURRENT IRT STUDENTS? Because of the phenomenal influence and support I received from the IRT when it came to my selection, application, and ultimately acceptance to the graduate program of my dreams, I am forever grateful to the program. I’ve been an alumni advisor for the past three years and plan to continue to serve in that role whenever possible.

Harvard University


New York University

Stanford University

A member of the admissions and recruitment team at Pima Community College in Tucson, Ryan Sermon helps students

Princeton University

University of California–Berkeley

through every phase of the admission process, including visits, applications, and financial aid. In addition to this full-

Rutgers University

University of California–Davis

Teachers College, Columbia University

University of California–San Diego

time role, Sermon facilitates Pima’s TRIO Upward Bound success workshops for high school students. Sermon holds

Tufts University

University of Washington

University of Connecticut

Washington State University

University of Maine

University of Southern California

a BA in sociology from Wheaton College and an MA in higher education from the University of Arizona, where he is currently pursuing a doctorate in higher education with an emphasis on college access, equity, and sociology.

Sol Rheem, IRT ’15, ’20

ADDRESSING INJUSTICE Immediately after graduating from Bowdoin College, I participated in the IRT’s Summer Workshop, which introduced me to a community of people with aspirations similar to mine—

We are grateful to our IRT Advisory Board members and many donors, whose generosity and partnership make the IRT program possible. Thank you! 2020 IRT Advisory Board Julia Lloyd Johannsen ’96, Co-Chair Alarik Myrin ’88, Co-Chair

Sari L. Edelstein ’98 Tyrone A. Forman ’88

Gabriela Poma ’88 Chera D. Reid, IRT ’00

Alejandro Velasco, IRT ’99, Co-Chair

Kimberly D. Formisano ’86, P’17 Melani Garcia ’21

Richard J. Shin ’90 John R. Swansburg Jr. ’96

Andrew J. Guff Jr. ’79 Marc A. Johnson, IRT ’97

Renee O. Wilmot, IRT ’12, ’17 Bruce S. Wilson ’77, P’12

Victoria Kataoka ’93 Michael J. Koehler ’94

Adam K. Wise ’83 Marcy Kerr Yuknat ’90

Kevin Maillard, IRT ’94

Gonzalo S. Zeballos, IRT ’92

Asna Afzal ’99 Saffron Agrawal ’21 Bret D. Asbury ’96, IRT ’99 Mercy L. Bell ’08 Andrew M. Chin ’00

addressing injustice through teaching. The IRT gave me a foundation and shaped my conviction to use education as a tool to


Priscilla Bolanos-Salas, IRT ’12

Oscar Cornejo, IRT ’16

empower my community. It also helped me connect with and transition smoothly into

R.C. Kemper Jr. Charitable Trust Inc.

Boston College’s Donovan Urban Teaching Scholars program, another community of


Janelle Bonasera Lila C. Brady ’18

Alexandra M. Cornelius, IRT ’91 Ryan W. Coughlan ’02

educators committed to justice and equity.

Anonymous Donald B. & Elizabeth B. Abbott

Rebecca G. & W. Tobias Brewster LaShawnda Brooks

Edward B. Cray P’83, GP’18 Jennifer H. Cray ’83 & Marc E. Igler P’18 Rebecca A. Cullen ’90

I believe the IRT can have great influence in encouraging its consortium institutions to become more explicitly inclusive and supportive spaces for students with diverse experiences and students whose professional goals promote equity. Racial equity in education goes beyond checking boxes, saying the right words, or increasing diversity numbers. Institutions need to walk the walk by funding the people they want to bring to their campus, creating equitable power structures that govern their schools, and eliminating gatekeeping achievement metrics. The IRT prepares and empowers scholars and advocates to pursue higher education; academic institutions should delve into exactly how they can fully welcome IRT scholars, include their perspectives and experiences, and address their priorities. When I decided to pursue a doctoral degree, I returned to the IRT. As I write and rewrite my statement of purpose, explore PhD programs, and meet faculty, I have become much more confident in my future as a scholar and more passionate about my research interests and goals, one of which is to impact teacher education and praxis by shifting how teachers “get to know” and see our newcomer immigrant youth. Sol Rheem teaches SEI U.S. History II and SEI World History at Somerville (MA) High School. She is in the process of applying to universities in the IRT’s consortium.

Jessica D. Acosta-Chavez ’06, IRT ’12 Asna Afzal ’99 Kelechi C. Ajunwa, IRT ’01 & Brighid M. Dwyer, IRT ’01 Chrystal Lynn Akor ’00 Jamin An, IRT ’10 & Andrew Westover, IRT ’15 David G. Anderson ’67 & Nancy S. Kaible P’00, ’03, ’06 Bret D. Asbury ’96, IRT ’99 Christopher S. Auguste ’76 & Varuni Nelson P’09, ’12 Jessica Bardill, IRT ’04 Lauren Barkwill John B. Bassett, DMD, ’67 & Jane Thorn Bassett Ellen Bateman, IRT ’05 Kristine C. Bay ’81 & Robert A. Iger Chelsea Beckett Matthew Bellico Taylor S. Bodman ’79 & Willa C. Bodman Kimberly Bohling

Alice Robertson Brown ’67 & Stephen G. Brown ’67 Louis M. Bernieri P’96, ’10 & Heather C. Bryant Abby Cacho Joseph F. Capella ’82 & Carlyn Capella Sheri J. Caplan ’83 & Kenneth Merkatz, MD, P’19 Nathaniel M. Cartmell III ’69 & Suzanne Pettus Cartmell P’06 Christine Caufield Alexandra & Scott Caulfield Sara Cerretani Nicole H. & John Cherubini A. Lawrence Chickering ’58 & Serena Chickering Oscar S.Y. Chim ’13 Andrew M. Chin ’00 & Emily D. Griset ’00 James Thomas Chirurg ’60 Kathleen Cleary Jill H. Clerkin David J. Cohen ’70 & Ruth Kevess-Cohen Viviana B. Cordero Garcia, IRT ’15

Alice Welt Cunningham W’67 Anthony Cunningham ’91 & Sandra D. Cunningham P’21 Rowan I. Curley ’20 Diana M. D’Agostino ’96 James A. Dand ’88 & Stacey Dand Julie Ongaro de Luxembourg ’84 & Robert de Luxembourg Kojo O. DeGraft-Hanson ’05 Jane Cashin Demers ’73 & Walter V. Demers III P’03, ’05 Denise Desrosiers Katherine H. Dlesk ’03 & Lenny Burdette Tonjala Eaton, IRT ’07 Sari L. Edelstein, PhD, ’98 & Holly Jackson, PhD Kristin & Nicholas Faivre Patrick J. & Karen J. Farrell P’08 Patricia Feraud, IRT ’14, ’17 Curtis Ferguson, IRT ’04 Tyrone A. Forman ’88 & Amanda Lewis

Kimberly Doggett Formisano ’86 & James A. Formisano P’17 Lisa M. Foster ’84, P’12, ’22

Louise A. Kennedy ’76 Margaret G. Klarberg Kennedy ’96 & Bruce L. Kennedy II

Kathleen Connor Nomicos ’80 & Nicholas G. Nomicos Nnenna C. Okoye ’07

John R. Swansburg Jr. ’96 & Harriet P. Menocal ’98 Mahir Syed, IRT ’19

Stephen H. Frank ’81 & Jane Reny Frank P’09

Michael J. Koehler ’94 & Amy Koehler

David A. Freilach Omar Galarraga, IRT ’98 Denise Galarza Sepulveda, IRT ’92 David L. Garrison & Suzanne Kelly-Garrison John W. Gillespie Jr. ’71 & Susan Gillespie Cameron M. Gillis ’17 Hilary L. Gillis ’15 Riley K. Gillis ’19 Stacy L. & Mark J. Gillis P’15, ’17, ’19 Jonathan Ginsburg ’69 Leislie Godo-Solo, IRT ’91 & Hossiri H. Godo-Solo P’13, ’17 Vikas Goela ’01 & Sphurthi Annapareddy Diamond Gray Andrew J. Guff Jr. ’79 & Jessica Stedman Guff Elyse Hambacher Raymond F. Healey Jr., PhD, ’66 & Claudia Angelos Rebecca Horton Carly House Truth J. Hunter, IRT ’11 Anna Jay Julia Lloyd Johannsen ’96 & Peter Johannsen Lloyd A. Johnson Marc A. Johnson, IRT ’97 Alan C. Johnston ’64 & Kathryn Edwards Johnston Tiffany D. Joseph, PhD, ’00, IRT ’03 David W. Kaiser ’87* & Rosemary Corbett Victoria Kataoka ’93 & James Brown Katherine Kelley James F. Kelly III ’06

Hwan Lee ’86 Cher Lewis ’68 Thomas P. Lockerby & Kathleen J. McCrickerd Angela S. Lorenz ’83 & Giovanni Figliomeni P’14 Eleanor Coneeney Lyons P’78, ’81, ’83, ’89, GP’11, ’14 Martha Phipps Maguire ’78 & Walter L. Maguire Jr. Kevin Maillard, IRT ’94 John P. Margolis ’78 Anne & Scott A. Marino P’19 Vincent M. Marino ’19 Sara Martin, IRT ’16 John A. Mayer Jr. ’58 & Barbara Phillips Mayer Kelly L. McCarthy ’16 Kelsey N. McChane Timothy C. McChristian ’73 & Deborah Steer P’03 Seth J. McCormick ’92 Kathleen M. McGowan ’03 Irma McIntyre Julian A. McNeil, IRT ’07, ’16 Emma C. Mehlman ’14 Kristin L. Mendez ’13 Clarisa S. Merkatz ’19 Chelsea Morey Mark J. Mulvaney ’79 & Mary Hunter Pynchon ’79 Jane Biondi Munna ’96 & Dax Munna Kealy O’Connor Murray ’96 & Michael P. Murray Aesha Mustafa, IRT ’16 Minor Myers III ’96 & Eliza W. Myers, MD Alarik Myrin ’88 & Kristine G. Myrin

Michele A. Parker, IRT ’03 Beth & Timothy Parsons

Dudney Sylla, IRT ’09 Oscar L. Tang ’56

Richard S. Pechter ’63 & Kayla Lebovitz Pechter P’89, ’93, ’96 Taixian Piao & Yu Wang P’23 Asabe W. Poloma & Kalu Ukoh Gabriela Poma ’88 Kenton Pope, IRT ’08 Elizabeth Parker Powell ’56 & David G. Powell P’84, ’90, GP’19 Edward W. Probert ’54 & Ann Linen Probert Catherine Purdum Nicole P. Quinlan ’92 Camila Reed-Guevara, IRT ’18 Chera D. Reid, IRT ’00 & Brian D. Tutt Natalie Reyes Rosalie Reyes, IRT ’19 Besenia Rodriguez, IRT ’99 David L. Ross ’70 Gita Runkle, IRT ’97 Alisa Sanchez, IRT ’06 Rachel Schaff Lori Goodman Seegers ’73, P’05 Shanti S. Serdy ’90 & Deon Wolpowitz P’21, ’24 Ryan Sermon, IRT ’10 Nicole K. Shadeed & Sean J. McCarthy James M. Shannon ’69 & Silvia C. Shannon P’98 Richard J. Shin ’90 & Hay-Won Byun Yara M. Sifri ’12 Jane C. Siviski Kathryn A. & Eli Slater Katherine B. & Dan J. Solimini Mark W. Stevens ’69 & Annalyn S. Stevens Ellen M. Sullivan

Sylvia L. Thayer ’54 & J. Philip Zaeder P’79, ’83, GP’17, ’18 Jamila Thomas, IRT ’05 Christopher C. Thompson ’83 & Elizabeth Thompson Chidozie K. Ugwumba ’99 Alejandro Velasco, IRT ’99 James F. Ventre ’79 & Kristen Reidy Ventre Louise M. Vital, IRT ’04 Rachel Walden Cranston, IRT ’95 Nathaniel L. Waters ’95 Robert F. Weiss P’83, ’88 & Jane Chandler Weiss Bach P. & Peter A. Weissman P’21, ’23 Sabrina Welsh Lenord A. Wilmot Renee O. Wilmot, IRT ’12, ’17 Katherine T. Wilson ’18 Bruce S. Wilson ’77 & Lisa D. Westfall P’12 Adam K. Wise ’83 & Ann S. Wise Lydia L. Wise ’86, P’21 Jonathan K. Wonnell ’77 & Frances Wonnell Lucius L. Xuan ’15 Edith W. Young ’11 Stefanie Scheer Young ’81 & Andrew W. Young ’81, P’11, ’14 Marcy Kerr Yuknat ’90 & David A. Yuknat Gonzalo S. Zeballos, IRT ’92 & Lisa M. Duffy-Zeballos Iliana Zepeda, IRT ’19 Ping Zhou & Wenjie Song P’21 Carolyn M. & James P. Zimmer P’17, ’20 Brittany Zorn, IRT ’13

This list reflects gifts received from July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020.    P = Phillips Academy Parent  GP = Phillips Academy Grandparent  * = deceased

YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE In these unprecedented times, the ongoing support of alumni, parents, and friends is especially critical to the IRT. Your gift—of any size—will have a direct and meaningful impact, empowering the IRT’s work to advance diversity and equity in our nation’s classrooms.

SUPPORT THE IRT TODAY To learn more about supporting the IRT, please contact Beth Parsons, director for museums and educational outreach, at 978-749-4523 or

A PRIVATE SCHOOL WITH A PUBLIC PURPOSE Phillips Academy’s four educational outreach programs—Andover Bread Loaf, the Institute for Recruitment of Teachers, (MS)2, and PALS—have long served as resources for students and teachers locally, nationally, and worldwide.

Profile for Phillips Academy

2020 IRT Program Report  

2020 IRT Program Report  

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded

Recommendations could not be loaded