Xandro Verdugo

The University of Texas at Austin’s Teach for America recruitment team is continuing our 2017 Corps Member features! We’re highlighting some of the fantastic individuals who have signed on as corps members, such as Vanessa Rodriguez, in order to shed some light on an organization that focuses on eliminating educational inequity once and for all.

Tonight’s featured member is Xandro Verdugo, a French and Spanish double major. Before graduating from UT, Xandro was involved in Delta Sigma Phi. When asked why he joined TFA, Xandro cited a close connection to his future students. “What compelled me to join TFA was the parallelism I sensed with disadvantaged kids – which TFA mainly serves. I was just like them when I was younger, and faced the same obstacles most of them currently face. Apart from those sentiments, at a young age I realized the power in education, knowledge, and their importance in combating our greatest challenges. TFA is my opportunity to give back to students just like me and to serve my community through what I’m best at.”

Xandro will be teaching secondary Spanish in Washington, D.C. While Xandro is thrilled to get in the classroom, he acknowledged that TFA will require both patience and determination.”We have a habit of romanticizing these challenges, but the potential reality of TFA might be the actual difficulty in staying motivated when you feel like no progress has been made. The rewards of teaching aren’t always immediately apparent; it is a long term investment.” He hopes that all potential applicants will recognize the reality of teaching before applying, emphasizing that “[Teaching] is no small feat and takes more energy than most care to realize.”

After teaching, Xandro hopes to study foreign policy and trade relations at a graduate school in the northeast. He expects to carry the experiences he gained while teaching with him, in order to continue fighting against educational inequity. “Many people seemingly fail to realize that inequity is inherent in many institutions and categorically hinders many people of color, and/or who come from impoverished homes. Their opportunities are enshrouded in difficulty, and it is based on conditions that are simply out of their control. So while the reality is that our educational system is distributed unevenly, it is not what we, as a nation, are based upon. Our nation was birthed on the idea of equal opportunity for all and I implore many to uphold this value for the sake of our future, our success, and our progression as a just nation.”

Stay tuned for more 2017 Corps Member features! If you have any interest in applying before our March 3rd deadline, talk to our Recruitment Manager, Jorge Galan. He can be reached at Jorge.Galan@teachforamerica.org.

Jorge Galan